Just as the Great Depression was turning around, the radio began to have a dramatic effect on political life in the US. Franklin D. Roosevelt had used his “fireside chats” as an avenue of communication to connect with an insecure and nervous population during the Depression and calmed fears and made the government a more reliable and steady influence. Multiple disruptive forces mad materialized in the public arena during the economic turmoil. The Communist Party, isolationists, anti-Semites and other divisive groups had worked to mobilize unemployed and distressed Americans to move to their political philosophies. By his creative use of the radio, making government a friendly and comforting image instead of an authoritarian message bearer, Roosevelt created a new face for politicians as a friend and comforter and the role of radio as a major influence in American culture was set.
When Pearl Harbor was attacked and America formally entered the World War the radio’s influence multiplied. Now the government could mobilize, motivate and message the population with the necessity to unite and put differences aside to support the war effort. News of places they had never known of, where their sons and husbands were now engaging enemies, this was the focal point of the after dinner evening activities. Families gathered around the radio to hope and pray for victory. The radio had arrived.