Homework Help

Using the "Address to Townsendites," how can I offer a summary for the ideology of the...

user profile pic

taxi740501 | Student, Grade 9 | eNoter

Posted March 12, 2012 at 3:43 PM via web

dislike 0 like

Using the "Address to Townsendites," how can I offer a summary for the ideology of the National Union for Social Justice?

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

akannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 12, 2012 at 6:35 PM (Answer #1)

dislike 2 like

I think that much can be pulled from the speech to represent the basic tenets of the National Union for Social Justice.  Father Coughlin is not short on expressing some of the basic ideas of the organization in the speech.  One of these beliefs was that the New Deal had become more for the benefit of "Wall Street" than that of "Main Street."  The speech represents this at a couple of points.  One such point is when Father Coughlin argues that the definition of "social justice" has to be aligned with this populist read on political reform:

...no candidate for Congress of the United States can receive the endorsement of the National Union unless while in Congress he has proven himself sympathetic to the principle of social justice.

For the National Union, this involves the rejection of the New Deal on the basis that it creates a "monetary elite" that is in control, and does not seem to affirm the idea that the people should control the nation's wealth.  The speech does not immediately hint at it, but this becomes an indictment of the banking community and the Jewish community, of whom Father Coughlin in his life's work did not spare in terms of critique.  When the speech suggests that President Roosevelt has failed because he "did not drive the money changers from the temple," it becomes a statement of the National Union's position about where the ownership of the nation's wealth should lie and also of Father Coughlin's belief on those of the Jewish persuasion.  In this, the position of the National Union on foreign interests and foreign presence in American monetary affairs is to stand against it and embrace a pro- Catholic position that affirms a sense of American populism, something that it argues that the administration of President Roosevelt attacks.

Sources:

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes