A Voice That Fell Silent

It should be clear by now that a nation can be no stronger abroad than she is at home. Only an America which practices what it preaches about equal rights and social justice will be respected by those whose choice affects our future. Only an America which has fully educated its citizens is fully capable of tackling the complex problems and perceiving the hidden dangers of the world in which we live. And only an America which is growing and prospering economically can sustain the worldwide defenses of freedom, while demonstrating to all concerned the opportunities of our system and society.

[…]

But now we have the military, the scientific, and the economic strength to do whatever must be done for the preservation and promotion of freedom.

That strength will never be used in pursuit of aggressive ambitions—it will always be used in pursuit of peace. It will never be used to promote provocations—it will always be used to promote the peaceful settlement of disputes.

We in this country, in this generation, are—by destiny rather than choice—the watchmen on the walls of world freedom. We ask, therefore, that we may be worthy of our power and responsibility, that we may exercise our strength with wisdom and restraint, and that we may achieve in our time and for all time the ancient vision of “peace on earth, good will toward men.” That must always be our goal, and the righteousness of our cause must always underlie our strength.

From the speech that President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was en route to deliver when he was assassinated November 22, 1963.

Seen here.

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~ by Frank on November 23, 2007.

4 Responses to “A Voice That Fell Silent”

  1. Or, “The Silence(r) which felled The Voice.”

  2. He sounds a lot like Bush here.

  3. I can kinda see that (“we… are.. the watchmen on the walls of freedom”), but there are very clear nuances that make these two vastly different. We could be a much more peaceful world if someone like this would rise to power in the US.

  4. This sort of language still gives me the willies. (“But now we have the military… strength to do whatever must be done for the preservation and promotion of freedom.”) Ick. I have a feeling we wouldn’t think so fondly of Kennedy if he hadn’t been killed before he got the chance to get more involved in Vietnam, which he was in the process of doing.

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