Franklin D. Roosevelt: American Hero
Polio. World War II. The New Deal. These are the things that first come to mind when one thinks of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, especially if Wikipedia is down and one hasn’t studied Roosevelt since the second grade. However, the life and times of President Roosevelt were much more complex than these gross generalizations. In fact, Roosevelt’s life was so complex that most of the details of his presidency will need to be skipped.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt was born in the late 19th century, probably, to his parents. When he was a young boy, he would play stick ball with his schoolyard chums, who affectionately called him “Franklin” or “Frankie” or possibly “Frank.” Roosevelt lived a happy childhood, filled with horse-and-buggies and speakeasies and casual racism towards the Irish, until the Titanic sank. Historians no longer know exactly when the great ship sank, but they do know that on that day, Roosevelt swore vengeance on the Germans who had caused the accident.
Not much happened for the next 20-30 years. However, during that time, Roosevelt developed a memorable, distinctive personality. He disliked waking up early. He liked food. He enjoyed sitting, unless he had been sitting for too long, in which case he enjoyed standing. His hands felt weird whenever he wore gloves for a long time. Some historians and college professors may dispute these facts, but it is impossible to prove that Roosevelt didn’t have these traits.
Roosevelt soon moved into politics, and before Herbert Hoover could even finish building his eponymous dam, FDR was in the White House. However, disaster soon struck; Roosevelt contracted polio in the first or maybe second year of his presidency. Ironically, the man who was once known for his love of sitting would now be forced to permanently use a wheelchair.
Roosevelt did not let his disease get him down, though. With his loving wife Eleanor at his side, Roosevelt helped put an end to America’s general malaise, also known as the Great Depression. According to my grandfather, a noted historian at Gopal University of North Jersey, “The Depression was terrible times. I remember, one hot day at the factory, my boss screamed at me because I hadn’t learned to read yet. I was four years old at the time.” Roosevelt ended this Depression by creating Social Security and Medicare, fiscally sustainable ways of improving the economy.
Time passed, and on December 7th of a specific year in the 1940s, Pearl Harbor was bombed by the “Goddamn Japs” (Grandpa 2007). The details of World War II have been covered by numerous historians, so they do not need to be rehashed here. Suffice to say that, by the end of the war, FDR had played an integral part in defeating “those stinking Krauts, dag nabbit” (Grandpa 2011).
Later, FDR died from complications of being old. He was somewhere around seventy years old.