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Some Inspirational Speeches for Your Fourth of July Enjoyment

Jeff Hall

Posted on July 2, 2021 20:55

2 users

America is an idea -- an amazing idea. Let's remember some presidents who spoke to our ideals. Here are some links to some of the all-time great speeches.

Some of America's greatest documents and speeches are delivered at times of adversity. 

The Declaration of Independence, published on July 4, 1776, was intended to rally Americans to remove the yoke of British oppression. War was soon to follow.

Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address came shortly after one of the bloodiest battles of all time. 

FDR's "a day that will live in infamy" speech was in response to our being bombed by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor.

I was nine years old when John F. Kennedy delivered his "ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country" inaugural address

It was a hopeful beginning to a new era, but the specter of nuclear war hung overhead.

Early in his administration, President Kennedy called for us to put a man on the moon -- and return him to earth safely -- within ten years. 

I hope, in coming years, before it's my time to go, to see such a unifying and spectacularly successful national effort again.

Perhaps the greatest speech of the modern era, of course, came in August of 1963.  I am referring, of course, to Dr. Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech.

It was only a few months later we heard, not a speech, but an unfathomably sad announcement, delivered by CBS newscaster Walter Cronkite when he told us our young president, John F. Kennedy, was dead

LBJ went on to pass the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Listen to him discuss why this bill was so important. LBJ did a lot to right a lot of wrongs, but, as you will see, much of his speech remains highly relevant today.

Jimmy Carter got widely panned for his so-called "malaise" speech because it was perceived to be such a downer. 

But if you listen to it carefully, he got quite a bit right: He warned we were becoming a selfish nation, materialistic, losing our way. He said we were facing a crisis of confidence.

Ronald Reagan, "The Great Communicator," gave incredible speeches.

I particularly liked his 1984 speech commemorating the 40th anniversary of D-Day, "The Boys of Pointe du Hoc." 

When the spaceship Challenger blew up in 1986, he consoled the nation and gave us hope.

President Reagan's  "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall" (1987) is of course a classic.

George W. Bush knew exactly what to say when he borrowed the bullhorn from a firefighter, standing atop of the wreckage at 9/11's Ground Zero.

Barack Obama gave many great speeches -- too professorial for some, but filled with history and hope. Instead of a speech, I refer you to his leading a congregation in the singing of "Amazing Grace" after a tragic shooting in South Carolina. True grace.

For a good chuckle, watch President Obama's final talk at the White House Correspondents Dinner (2016).

Robin Williams was never president, but watch him in action as an American Flag.

Happy Fourth of July -- and God bless America!




Jeff Hall

Posted on July 2, 2021 20:55


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