Tag Archives: John F. Kennedy

Senator John F Kennedy on Jack Paar Show: June 16, 1960

On June 16, 1960, Senator John F. Kennedy made history by being the first presidential candidate to appear on a late-night television program.

We must remember the times.
In the year 1960, a political candidate making an appearance on a late-night entertainment show was something which had not been done … because, in many circles, such an appearance would be frowned upon.

For example, as Frank Rich wrote in the New York Times, “By the standards of 1960, a Presidential candidate’s appearance on an entertainment program was considered a bit shocking.”

John F. Kennedy would become known as the first “TV President.”

We have only a short clip from the show, but it is amazing how the statements Senator Kennedy made, resonate so clearly with our times, with our world, today.

His response to questions regarding why he went into politics, the responsibility of the United States in world affairs, the responsibility of the office of President, the issue of enemy countries sending “fellow travelers” into the United States, and how important it is for the United States to set an example which citizens of other countries would want to follow.
Senator Kennedy stated that “in the final analyses, they have to believe in freedom themselves. I don’t think you can sell freedom … In the long run, the best asset we have is the desire of people to be free.”

In other words, you can’t “inject” democracy.

For the record, this was 58 years ago.
Yes … 58 years ago.

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Robert F Kennedy on Jack Parr Show: March 13, 1964

It was the first public appearance of Robert F. Kennedy, after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

This year, Thanksgiving was on November 22.
Like many of you, Thanksgiving is a special day for me. In fact, the entire weekend (for me … 4 days!!!) is something I look forward to, all year.

This year, it seemed that I paid more attention to “November 22” than to “Thanksgiving.”

It may be because, for the past few months, I have been researching the history of John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. I have read much, and watched many documentaries and films on their lives, and their families’ lives and history. As I’ve read, and viewed, the one thing that strikes me the most, personally, is how close “John and Bobby” were. That is the one thing I have “taken away” from my studies. I just completed a Library display entitled “A Brother’s Trust,” which I will share in the future.

On March 13, 1964, it was exactly 16 weeks after November 22, 1963.
In his introduction of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, Jack Paar stated, “ … A man whose own life reminds us of what brother really means …”

Many of you may remember that Senator John F. Kennedy, as a presidential candidate, had appeared on “The Jack Parr Show” on June 16, 1960.

I think that, even though I didn’t know them personally, I feel a personal connection. Because … I have brothers, too. While I don’t exactly remember President Kennedy, I remember the times that followed. I remember, very well, Robert Kennedy. I remember “the times which followed” both. I remember well enough to ponder, in a deeply emotional way, “what might have been.”


Wealth Stored for the Righteous-Part 16

Hi Friends:

It is good to be back to writing.

With job, business, and other writing responsibilities, it’s funny how “your first love” gets pushed “to the back.” Plus, the opportunity to travel has also figured into the time equation.

We’re back to our series, in which, yes, we are thankful for what our Heavenly future holds, but, let’s not forget all of the benefits … all of the blessings … we can enjoy right now. I note that I use the term “can enjoy” right now, and realize why: There are just so many blessings we have, in our life right now, which, often, we take for granted. And, just like Spiritual benefits and blessings, there are many that we are not taking advantage of … even though, they are “ours” to use and enjoy … freely …

There is one great advantage we have in the United States, which, sadly, is not enjoyed by many countries around the globe. A great advantage, a great privilege, a great blessing, which we, as we do with so many “privileges” we enjoy in this country, take for granted. And, since we take this privilege for granted, it often becomes “unused.” This is such a basic privilege and, yes, freedom, we enjoy here in the United States. Ready?

The freedom to travel.
Period.
The freedom and liberty to travel.
What a blessing, a great advantage, and a great privilege we enjoy here in the United States. I’m not so sure if this isn’t near the top of the list for most “under-rated” privileges and freedoms we have here. A freedom which so many, in so many countries, can’t enjoy … because they don’t have this freedom that we, sadly, take for granted.

Especially after writing the series regarding Christian persecution around the world, to begin to understand what is happening in other countries, I have really been struck by how awesome a freedom and privilege it is, to just “get in the car and go.” Just as significant to me is thinking about how many of us, here in the United States (and other places), which have this liberty and freedom, yet don’t take advantage of it.

I think of the United States, for this example, as a continent. Like, say, Africa. Or, a block of countries in the Middle East. Instead of individual, separate countries, here we have “states.” I know, we all know this. Yet, think about it: We can “move” between states, without any problem or trouble at all. No “check-points” or other heavily guarded “militia-points” to carefully get screened-with our lives depending upon it-every time we cross into a different state. Think about it: You enter into another “state,” and after an intensive search (think of the time this would take, travelers), you are informed, by military personnel, that you have to turn back … you can’t enter … based upon … well, a variety of things, like political affiliation or religious beliefs …
Can you imaging, in the middle of your vacation … having to turn around, and go back? Just because of the political party you belong to, or because of your faith?

Let’s put it this way: “?????!!!!!?????!!!!!”
Etc.

If this would happen to you, and your family, just once … think about it …

Did I mention that, often, at stations such as these … the potential to be arrested for either of these “violations” (politics or faith) could mean that, not only could you be prevented from entering the country, but … but … you could get arrested. This also means being separated from your family. Etc.

I’m sorry, but I can’t help thinking about 2 groups of people I know:
I love to hike, and, when I hike, I like to enjoy the whole experience. I’m the type that likes to stop and identity every tree. This is called “taking my time.” I have hiked with people whose goal, it seems, is to set a new land-speed record. They hike faster than I run.
The other group are those who go on “vacation,” but rush, rush, rush. I won’t mention the “always on cellphone” issue, or try to, you guessed it … set a new land-speed record for moving from place to place. Can you imagine either of these two groups traveling throughout most of the world, in these war-torn countries?

Recently, we traveled down to Connecticut, meaning going through Massachusetts, and then we spent time over in Rhode Island. It was during this trip that I began to think about how easy it is for us to go from “place to place.” No check-points. No military. Here is what strikes me now, still thinking about our nation being divided into states, and not countries. Again, please consider the context. What if Massachusetts was war-torn? Think about how that would affect our travel. Just to get to Connecticut, or Rhode Island, not wanting to take a chance on what could happen in Massachusetts, it could add days to our travel time.

We’ve spent a lot of time in Maine recently. What if Maine was war-torn? The other part of that scenario is this, and, please consider this: If our neighboring “states” were in the midst of war … how long would it be, before the war crept into our “state?’ Just think about how that would affect every area … every decision … every move … in your life.

I feel a sadness for those who are able, but don’t, travel. Our country is so beautiful. And … And … so accessible ….You can just “get in your car and go.”

Boy, do we take a lot for granted.
OK … OK … I complained about the toll in Maine … We were on 95 for maybe 50 miles, and we had to pay 3 tolls … something like 2.75 in total … Yes, I did think that, if you pay the toll … why can’t you drive as fast as you want???
I even thought about how much money …. As I do each time (I’ll admit it) I pay a toll … I thought about how much money they must make from the toll … How could we be in debt??? How could there be bad places on the road?

Sorry, but I always think the same thought, after thinking about gross mismanagement … I mean … after thinking about all the money collected … I thought about how having a lottery would provide so much money for … yes, our schools and such …. How could we be in debt???

It’s been years … and, I still haven’t figured out the New Jersey Turnpike …

Other subjects for another time, perhaps.

Anyway, what a great, beautiful country we have! And, it is there for the visiting!

I think about a speech which President John F. Kennedy made in the early ’60’s. How he promised that we would land a man on the moon before the end of the decade. But, that was only part of the goal. Not just to land a man on the moon … but, bring them back safely … I think about how, in today’s world, the way it is right now … the possibility of just traveling to another “state” and returning safely … is an impossibility …

Yes, there are costs associated with travel. But, in the context of this writing, what a privilege and blessing it is, to be allowed to freely go “anywhere we want,” without having to worry about what so much of the world has to worry about, as a part of their daily lives.

So, OK, let’s talk about “costs” associated with travel. Our freedom, as a nation, was paid for … at a dear, dear cost. Our continued freedom … the privilege and liberty to travel from state to state, continues to be paid for, by the sacrifices of our men and women actively serving around the world …Our freedom, as Christians, the liberty we have, was paid for, at the highest cost imaginable, God’s only Son. What great benefits and blessing we enjoy as we travel along life’s highway … Sadly, I think of those who don’t take advantage …

Blessings to you, and you family,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.

 

“Period” Art Words: “Begin a New Day”- Part Four

Hi Friends:

Well, as I begin Part Four, I am reminded that the original idea was a single post, intended to share with you a particular piece of artwork we feature over at our online store, Pastor Appreciation Gifts, entitled “Begin a New Day.” As with our writing, it will never be about the art … it’s always about the words … and, just thinking about the words to this artwork brought on a series, which we hope has blessed and encouraged you. I never know, when I begin to write that first sentence, what will follow. I mean, I have it all planned out … but, God will intervene, and … “here we go …”

I am reminded that God gave me an idea from the book of Haggai, and, as I began to write … and listen … it turned into an eight-part series. It was only about “Three Words,” but God turned it into several pages, over many, many days. Looks like it will also turn into a new book in the future. I just can’t say enough, how important it is to listen to God, to put yourself into a position to be used by Him, for Him, and through Him.

As I continue this “series” on “Begin a New Day,” I remember that, about 6 months ago, I started a series on “Road Reflections,” about our travels through the South … it has been 6 months now, and I haven’t finished it yet, and, in fact, haven’t written about the “series” in what seems like months … I’m ok with that, as long as I am led by the Spirit about what I write, and when …

One of my favorite stories about President John F. Kennedy is how often he would prepare a specific speech, for a specific time, for a specific audience … and, then … between the time that he would be introduced, and the time he had made his way up to the podium … he would deliver a totally different speech … completely from memory …

I am also reminded of what I have recently researched concerning Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, in Washington, DC, on that day back in 1963. The day before (and days before), Dr. King, yes, prepared the speech that he knew could be the defining moment … and, prepared for the speech … The “I Have a Dream” segment was not part of the preparation … in fact, his closest advisor had strongly advised against using this “I Have a Dream” idea which Dr. King had already presented in speeches in other cities, prior … So, somewhere in the middle of Dr. King’s speech (the one which he was reading directly from, on the podium) … he heard the voice of legendary Gospel singer Mahalia Jackson (who had performed earlier in the program), yelling to him … yelling at him … to talk about “The Dream,” the title of a similar speech she had heard him make in those other cities … So, Dr. King set aside the remainder of his prepared speech … and, spoke, with no notes, the speech which would define his life, and his mission to the world …

I should add that, according to my research, when Dr. King began the “I Have a Dream” portion of the speech, this “closest advisor” was not pleased … I can’t repeat what he said … but, let’s just say that he was not happy with the way the speech had turned … that Dr. King had relied on his heart alone to share his deepest “dreams,” and not what was “prepared” for him to say …

The night before Dr. King gave this speech, he was going over the prepared speech with his advisors, making final preparations, in a meeting room at the hotel. Abruptly, Dr. King left the meeting, to go up to his private room. The reason? Here’s what he said: “I’m going to consult with my Lord.”
You know how many were there to hear Dr. King’s words. They had planned for, maybe … maybe … 100,000. You know that 250,000 came. I have had the honor to speak in front of large crowds, and, it seems, the larger the audience, the larger the preparation. And, I’ll admit, the less the “ad-lib.” And, the more guests are performing/speaking on a program, the more closely you are expected to “stay with the program.” I can’t even imagine standing in front of a quarter-of-a-million people, and then just completely leaving the script behind, and (as we say in education), just “winging it.”

On that hot August day in 1963, there was a world-wide television audience, including President John F. Kennedy, watching from the White House. I have read what he said, as he watched the speech. Let’s just say he was impressed. Greatly impressed. Later that day, as Dr. King and other dignitaries associated with the event were guests at the White House, here are the 4 words with which President Kennedy greeted Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King: “I have a dream.”

I am reminded of a Bible study I attended a few years ago. The Pastor was the speaker, and he began the lesson by describing the impact which a few words he heard, early in his life, had made on him. How a few words, from one speech he had listened to, had affected the way he looked at his life and purpose today, and in the future. How this one speech had affected not only him, but an entire generation of Americans. The speech was President Kennedy’s Inauguration Speech, which he had heard live, as a teenager. The words revolved around the “Ask not what this country can do for you” portion of the speech.

That was 1961. Two years later, came the “Dream” speech. It could be said that, just like Abraham Lincoln’s speech at Gettysburg (I try to never miss an opportunity!), these speeches’ power and affect would only be realized later … but, they would be realized … the question is always, “How fully?”

You just never know who may be listening to what you say. Or, to what you write.

I think I just realized that I must write a “Part Five.”

I had no idea that I would “go there” with this writing, but I am glad that I did. I want to be obedient to the call. His call. I am reminded, again, that God is not interested in capability … only availability …

Jesus gave the most powerful “speeches” in history … I also think of Paul, standing before kings … I don’t read of any mention of preparation for these speeches … I only read of the time they each spent in prayer … before the speeches … This “Begin a New Day” with prayer, and hearing from God is a powerful concept … and, I’m ok with that …

I am also reminded of the power of words. Your words. My words. Words you say. Words I say. Words you write. Words I write. How much prayer goes into each? If we “Begin a New Day” the “right way,” then I like our chances for the rest of the day.

Blessings to you, and your family,
Richard. Vincent. Rose.
The Gettysburg Address