John F. Kennedy Quotations

John F. Kennedy Quotations
JOHN F. KENNEDY 1917 – 1963
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  1. "A child miseducated is a child lost."

  2. "A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on."

  3. "A man does what he must-in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures-and that is the basis of all human morality."

  4. "A nation which has forgotten the quality of courage which in the past has been brought to public life is not as likely to insis tupon or regard that quality in its chosen leaders today--and in fact we have forgotten."

  5. "A rising tide lifts all boats."

  6. "Above all, we are coming to understand that the arts incarnate the creativity of a free people. When the creative impulse cannot flourish, when it cannot freely select its methods and objects, when it is deprived of spontaneity, then society severs the root of art."

  7. "All this will not be finished in the first 100 days. Nor will it be finished in the first 1,000 days, nor in the life of this administration, nor even perhaps in our lifetime on this planet. But let us begin."

  8. "All of us do not have equal talent, but all of us should have an equal opportunity to develop our talents."

  9. "But peace does not rest in the charters and covenants alone. It lies in the hearts and minds of all people. So let us not rest all our hopes on parchment and on paper, let us strive to build peace, a desire for peace, a willingness to work for peace in the hearts and minds of all of our people. I believe that we can. I believe the problems of human destiny are not beyond the reach of human beings."

  10. "Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future."

  11. "Conformity is the enemy of thought and the jailer of freedom."

  12. "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country."

  13. "Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men."

  14. "Each President, is the President not only of all who live, but in very real sense, of all those who have yet to live."

  15. "Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names."

  16. "Geography has made us neighbors. History has made us friends. Economics has made us partners, and necessity has made us allies. Those whom God has so joined together, let no man put asunder." (To Canadian Parliament)

  17. "Give me your help and your hand, and your voice and your vote."

  18. "I am certain that after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit."

  19. "I am the man who accompanied Jacqueline Kennedy to Paris, and I have enjoyed it."

  20. "I don't think the intelligence reports are all that hot. Some days I get more out of the New York Times."

  21. "I hope that no American ... will waste his franchise and throw away his vote by voting either for me or against me solely on account of my religious affiliation. It is not relevant."

  22. "I look forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty."

    Buy at
    The Loneliest Job, John F. Kennedy, 1961

  23. "If anyone is crazy enough to want to kill a president of the United States, he can do it. All he must be prepared to do is give his life for the president's."

  24. "If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him."

  25. "In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility-I welcome it."

  26. "Irrational barriers and ancient prejudices fall quickly when the question of survival itself is at stake."

  27. "It might be said now that I have the best of both worlds. A Harvard education and a Yale degree."

  28. "I want to emphasize in the great concentration which we now place upon scientists and engineers how much we still need the men and women educated in the liberal tradition, willing to take the long look, undisturbed by prejudices and slogans of the moment, who attempt to make an honest judgment on difficult events."

  29. "I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered together at the White House--with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined here alone."
    to his Nobel Prize winning guests

  30. "If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. "

  31. "If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity."

  32. "Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other."

  33. "Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, That we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the Survival and success of liberty."
    (Inaugural Address Washington, D.C. January 20, 1961)

  34. "Let the world go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans, born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage, and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today, at home and around the world!"

  35. "Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate."

  36. "Let us think of education as the means of developing our greatest abilities, because in each of us there is a private hope and dream which, fulfilled, can be translated into benefit for everyone and greater strength for our nation."

  37. "Let's not talk so much about vice. I'm against vice in all forms."

  38. "Let us resolve to be masters, not the victims, of our history, controlling our own destiny without giving way to blind suspicions and emotions."

  39. "Let us welcome controversial books and controversial authors."

  40. "Modern cynics and skeptics ... see no harm in paying those to whom they entrust the minds of their children a smaller wage than is paid to those to whom they entrust the care of their plumbing."

  41. "My father always told me that all businessmen were sons of bitches, but I never believed it till now." (On steel industry executives who increased prices)

  42. "My imagination makes me human and makes me a fool; it gives me all the world and exiles me from it."

  43. "Man is still the most extraordinary computer of all."

  44. "Mankind must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind."

  45. "Mothers all want their sons to grow up to be President, but they don't want them to become politicians in the process."

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    Jackie and John F. Kennedy returning ...

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