A Word Or Two From Linus Pauling – 1958 – Past Daily Reference Room

Dr. Linus Pauling - one of the most influential Chemists in history and one  of the most outspoken peace activists.

Dr. Linus Pauling – one of the most influential Chemists in history and one of the most outspoken peace activists.

. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – Meet The Press – guest: Dr. Linus Pauling – May 11, 1958 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection.

During the dark days of the 1950s, if you were concerned about the effects of nuclear testing on the atmosphere, were a peace activist and wanted to ban use of the Atomic bomb, you naturally had to be a Communist.

Dr. Linus Pauling, one of the century’s most influential Chemists and one of the most outspoken critics of our Nuclear weapons program and an ardent peace activists, came under a constant barrage of criticism during his career. His campaign against the use of Nuclear Weapons and the banning of all testing called his political leanings into question and he was branded everything from a fanatic to a Communist.

When he presented a petition to the United Nations, calling for an immediate ban on nuclear testing; a petition signed by 9,000 other concerned Scientists in 44 countries, and saying exposure had already done irreparable human damage by radiation, he was roundly criticized by U.S. military officials for being a tool of Moscow.

Despite his being awarded the Nobel Prize in 1954 and a Presidential Medal for his work during World War 2, those critics questioned Pauling’s qualifications outside his field of Chemistry and Physics. Pauling, in defense questioned those critics motives, saying much of what was being peddled regarding nuclear energy was a lie.

The controversy created a considerable amount of public interest. And because of that, Dr. Pauling was invited to participate in a panel discussion via Meet The Press on May 11, 1958.

Here is that complete discussion as it was broadcast by Meet The Press.

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1 Response

  1. July 3, 2019

    […] Just two months after dealing with unfavorable press from conservative columnist Fulton Lewis, Jr. and subsequent threats from major donors to withdraw financial support from Caltech, Pauling appeared on the May 11, 1958 episode of Meet the Press. [Audio of this appearance is included below — credit: pastdaily.com and the Gordon Skene Sound Collection] […]