No. 627 NAI DFA 19/2A

Confidential Report from Michael MacWhite to Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(1008/19/32) (Confidential)

Washington DC, 28 January 1932

The meeting of protest against the so-called Public Safety Act which the 'Irish World' and an active element in certain Irish societies have been organizing for the last three months took place on Sunday, Jan. 24th in the Mecca Temple, New York. According to newspaper reports, 2500 persons were present and the sum of $2,890 was collected presumably for the relief of Irish prisoners and their dependents.

In view of the great Irish population in New York, it is remarkable that no person of any standing in Irish or American circles figured amongst the speakers, the principal of whom seemed to be Michael Price, who has only recently arrived in this country and in reference to whom I cabled you some days ago.1 Another speaker, Roger Baldwin, is the Director of the Civil Liberties Union and is widely known as a crank with Bolshevistic leanings. He boasts of having no Irish background. The Chairman of the meeting, John T. Ryan, is presumably the man who brought the Captain of the German Gun Runner 'The Aud' to this country about twelve months ago under false pretences. Charles E. Russell, another pure blood American who was described as a Socialist candidate for public office, is an old acquaintance. His name figured on our visa blacklist in 1926. The Rev. F.J. Cotter of Ironton, Ohio, and an Oriental named Basanta Koomar Roy also spoke. In a recent issue of the 'Irish World' Father Cotter refers to criticisms of his political activities which very likely came from his ecclesiastical superiors but which he evidently intends to ignore.

After all the expenses incurred in trumpeting this meeting by the organizers are paid, there will be little left for the prisoners or their dependents; in fact, the meeting showed the insignificance of the support which these people command in the City of New York.

[signed] M. MacWhite

1 Not printed.

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