chapter  9
9
Pages 31

O N APRIL 13, 1948, my son, Jonathan, arrived in this curi-ous and troubled world. He was beautiful, eight pounds and nine ounces, and in spite of his being two and a half pounds heavier than Rachel was at the time of her birth, the delivery was an easier one for Bette. We were completely delighted at exemplifying that obvious American middle-class statistic, two children, one boy, one girl. We had dreamed and talked at times of having four children, but the danger and tension that had come into our lives precluded that. In the months before Jonathan's birth, the terror had spread, one of the most newsworthy spreaders being an actor, name of Ronald Reagan. He had already been feeding to the FBI names of members of the Screen Actors Guild whom he suspected of being Communists, and since he was the president of the guild, one is at a loss to put a proper name to his conduct. However, this was not to become public knowledge until the last years of his presidency, and in October of 1947 he testified before the Committee on UnAmerican Activities that the guild was not controlled by Communists, although there were many Communist members. He named no names then, since to do so publicly would have undermined his position. Robert Taylor, a very important film star at that time, stepped into the gap, declaring manfully, "I personally believe the Communist Party should be outlawed. If I had my way, they'd all be sent back to Russia." He then proceeded to name names most generously.