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On FDR’s Birthday, International Community Should Honor His Legacy By Eradicating Polio

In an opinion piece in the GlobalPost’s “Global Pulse” blog, Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Oshinsky notes “January 30 mark[ed] the 131st birthday of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the longest-serving American president,” and “reflects on the advances in the fight against polio, one of FDR’s greatest legacies.” He writes, “Roosevelt took up the fight against polio in the 1930s, motivated by his own struggle with the disease,” adding, “The fight against polio has followed in FDR’s footsteps and marshaled a wide and diverse range of polio heroes, including Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, who has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of polio efforts around the globe; Rotary International, which has mobilized millions of volunteers over the past 25 years to vaccinate children; and Dr. Naveen Thacker, who helped eliminate polio in India, one of most challenging places to fight the disease.”

“Thanks to tremendous advances last year, we have a unique opportunity to end polio,” Oshinsky continues, detailing some of these advances. “Franklin Roosevelt and other polio champions have brought us to this crucial point,” he states, and concludes, “Now it’s our turn to honor their legacy and make history by eradicating polio once and for all” (1/30).