The U.S. has a miraculous coincidence on the holiday calendar that couldn’t be more apropos this year. If you haven’t noticed, this calendar year matches 1978 but more importantly I happened to notice that John F. Kennedy’s birth date (May 29, 1917) coincides with Memorial Day, making that coming date the 100th anniversary of his birth! I can’t think of a better time to celebrate this coincidence than with some of his best and most illustrious quotes along with some of Bobby Kennedy’s as well. Both men being brothers imparted equal doses of humor and wisdom. Without any further adieu here are a few, a sampling if you will, of their quotes starting with Robert F. Kennedy:
“In such a fantastic and dangerous world- we will not find answers in old dogmas, by repeating outworn slogans or fighting on ancient battlegrounds against fading enemies long after the real struggle has moved on. We ourselves must change to master change. We must rethink our old ideas and beliefs before they capture and destroy us.” – Robert F. (a.k.a. Bobby) Kennedy
“When we think of liberty in 1961, let us not be content with the stately periods of the Fourth of July orations. Let us not just talk of liberty: let us act for it. Let us translate our devotion into deeds.” (appeared in Parade Magazine on July 2, 1961)
“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” (on the first anniversary of the Alliance for Progress, March 13, 1962)
“Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth.”
“The great enemy of truth is very often not the lie–deliberate, contrived and dishonest–but the myth–persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.
[Commencement Address at Yale University, June 11 1962]”
“What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.” – Robert F. Kennedy
Have a blessed and peaceful Memorial Day !
The JFK Presidential Library and Museum in Boston is marking the 100th anniversary with a new exhibit called JFK 100: Milestones and Mementos. If you are in Boston go experience this new exhibit! Check it out at http://www.jfklibrary.org