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Why Was a U.S. President’s Health Crisis Kept Quiet?

After already recovering from a bout of the flu, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson suffered a massive stroke on the 2nd of October, 1919. He was partially paralyzed as a result of the stroke.

His second wife of just a few years - Edith Bolling Wilson - refused to allow any member of the President’s cabinet, or the press, to see him for many months after his stroke.

Until January, of 1920, the President had almost no contact with anyone outside his most-intimate circle of family and doctors. He did not meet with his cabinet until April of 1920.

Why, do you think, was President Wilson’s health crisis kept from the American people?

Although World War I was over, by the time of Wilson’s stroke, why would his cabinet members not have insisted on seeing the President before April of 1920?

If something happened to an American President today, do you think anyone could keep that information from the American people?  Explain your answer.


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