WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2016-2017

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/745407

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Page 67 of 211

free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich." Kennedy didn't live to see his ideals realized, but his assas- sination set the stage for a torrent of legislation unparalleled since the New Deal. "Kennedy's death had a major impact on pushing society forward because of the outpouring of sym- pathy," Schechter said. Kennedy's successor, Lyndon Johnson, enjoyed over- whelming power in both houses of Congress. Johnson didn't have to worry about Senate fili- busters as he pushed through his Great Society programs, including the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, Head Start, Medicaid, and Medicare. Thanks to increased government support of higher education in the wake of the space race, colleges were awash with students and short on professors. With a wide choice of job offers, Schechter settled on Wellesley College. Both he (Amherst '57) and his wife, Alison (Mount Holyoke '58), were enamored by the quality of life on small New England campuses and the opportunity to get to know students in a way not possible at large universities. Schechter first encountered Clinton while serving as advisor to student government. He was in his third year on campus and Clinton her second. "The main thing she stood out for was that she was incredibly articulate in terms of being able to get up on her feet and talk thoughtfully without oversimplifying things," he said. Much has been written about the transfor- mation of Clinton, "the Goldwater girl," into a progressive Democrat while at Wellesley. Schechter said she was a Republican less by conviction than by culture. She had grown up in a Republican family in a conservative suburb of Chicago. But by the time she arrived at Wellesley, the seeds for her conversion had already taken root. They were planted by a Methodist youth minister. "The person who had the largest effect on Hillary was Don Jones," said Schechter of the young minister who escorted teens into the city where for the first time they came face to face with poverty. 66 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | w i n t e r 2 0 1 6 / 2 0 1 7 an interview with alan schechter Professor Schechter in 1985

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