Letter: 'These things really did happen'

Thank you so much for “The Get Fisher Squad” article in the Fall/Winter 2015 issue of Window. That very kind of “politics” affected my father's life at the University of Wisconsin. Some of his student friends attended a “meeting.” Later these students were labeled by McCarthy’s Committee on Un-American Activities (I think it was called) as Communists and they were never able to be biochemists, their chosen professions. Our Dad was too busy with his experiments to attend the meeting so he was not “listed.” 

My husband and I summered in British Columbia on Kootenay Lake. Up in the mountains was a colony of Hollywood actors, screenwriters, etc. They had relocated out of Hollywood because of McCarthyism. They cooked French pastries all winter and sold them to the campers for extra money. These things really DID happen! Are they likely to happen again? Recognizing the signs and possibilities and putting a stop to them is everyone’s responsibility. The right to assembly (and to have visionary ideas) is an important part of our government’s protective rights. Rarely are these mentioned. Next we may have to draft legislation to limit the right to bring false witness against good people. It is thought to be “fair game,” but it is not right. Thank goodness for fact-checking but is it enough?

Nancy Kroening

(’87, Environmental Studies)