Zitate von Lyndon Baines Johnson

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Lyndon Baines Johnson

Geburtstag: 27. August 1908
Todesdatum: 22. Januar 1973

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Lyndon Baines Johnson , aufgrund seiner Initialen auch LBJ genannt, war ein US-amerikanischer Politiker der Demokratischen Partei und von 1963 bis 1969 der 36. Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten. Zuvor vertrat er von 1937 bis 1949 den Bundesstaat Texas im US-Repräsentantenhaus sowie von 1949 bis 1961 im US-Senat. Im Senat war er darüber hinaus seit 1953 Vorsitzender der demokratischen Fraktion. Ab 1961 bekleidete er das Amt des Vizepräsidenten unter John F. Kennedy. Noch am Tag von dessen Ermordung, dem 22. November 1963, wurde Johnson an Bord der Air Force One als neuer US-Präsident vereidigt. Johnson führte die verbleibenden 14 Monate von Kennedys Amtsperiode zu Ende und wurde der Präsidentschaftswahl im November 1964 mit der größten Mehrheit im Popular Vote der US-Geschichte im Amt bestätigt.

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Zitate Lyndon Baines Johnson

„John Kennedy wurde ermordet, und auch ich werde ermordet (...) der einzige Unterschied ist: Ich lebe.“

—  Lyndon Baines Johnson
gegen Ende seiner Amtszeit und vor dem Hintergrund des schleppend verlaufenden Vietnamkrieges; Der Spiegel: Ich lebe, Heftsausgabe vom 20. Januar 1969

„All Americans must have the privileges of citizenship regardless of race.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: All Americans must have the privileges of citizenship regardless of race. And they are going to have those privileges of citizenship regardless of race. But I would like to caution you and remind you that to exercise these privileges takes much more than just legal right. It requires a trained mind and a healthy body. It requires a decent home, and the chance to find a job, and the opportunity to escape from the clutches of poverty. Of course, people cannot contribute to the Nation if they are never taught to read or write, if their bodies are stunted from hunger, if their sickness goes untended, if their life is spent in hopeless poverty just drawing a welfare check. So we want to open the gates to opportunity. But we are also going to give all our people, black and white, the help that they need to walk through those gates.

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„Of those to whom much is given, much is asked.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: Of those to whom much is given, much is asked. I cannot say and no man could say that no more will be asked of us. An allusion to the Parable of the Faithful Servant

„Our enemies have always made the same mistake.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: Our enemies have always made the same mistake. In my lifetime—in depression and in war—they have awaited our defeat. Each time, from the secret places of the American heart, came forth the faith they could not see or that they could not even imagine. It brought us victory. And it will again. For this is what America is all about. It is the uncrossed desert and the unclimbed ridge. It is the star that is not reached and the harvest sleeping in the unplowed ground. Is our world gone? We say "Farewell." Is a new world coming? We welcome it—and we will bend it to the hopes of man.

„There is no issue of States' rights or National rights. There is only the struggle for human rights.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: There is no Constitutional issue here. The command of the Constitution is plain. There is no moral issue. It is wrong—deadly wrong– to deny any of your fellow Americans the right to vote in this country. There is no issue of States' rights or National rights. There is only the struggle for human rights.

„There is no constitutional issue here. The command of the Constitution is plain. There is no moral issue. It is wrong–deadly wrong–to deny any of your fellow Americans the right to vote in this country. There is no issue of States fights or national rights. There is only the struggle for human rights.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: The Constitution says that no person shall be kept from voting because of his race or his color. We have all sworn an oath before God to support and to defend that Constitution. We must now act in obedience to that oath. There is no constitutional issue here. The command of the Constitution is plain. There is no moral issue. It is wrong– deadly wrong– to deny any of your fellow Americans the right to vote in this country. There is no issue of States fights or national rights. There is only the struggle for human rights.

„This right to vote is the basic right without which all others are meaningless. It gives people, people as individuals, control over their own destinies.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: In 1957, as the leader of the majority in the United States Senate, speaking in support of legislation to guarantee the right of all men to vote, I said, "This right to vote is the basic right without which all others are meaningless. It gives people, people as individuals, control over their own destinies."

„A democracy works best when the people have all the information that the security of the Nation permits. No one should be able to pull curtains of secrecy around decisions which can be revealed without injury to the public interest. At the same time, the welfare of the Nation or the rights of individuals may require that some documents not be made available.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: A democracy works best when the people have all the information that the security of the Nation permits. No one should be able to pull curtains of secrecy around decisions which can be revealed without injury to the public interest. At the same time, the welfare of the Nation or the rights of individuals may require that some documents not be made available. As long as threats to peace exist, for example, there must be military secrets. A citizen must be able in confidence to complain to his Government and to provide information, just as he is– and should be– free to confide in the press without fear of reprisal or of being required to reveal or discuss his sources.

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„The Constitution says that no person shall be kept from voting because of his race or his color.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: The Constitution says that no person shall be kept from voting because of his race or his color. We have all sworn an oath before God to support and to defend that Constitution. We must now act in obedience to that oath. There is no constitutional issue here. The command of the Constitution is plain. There is no moral issue. It is wrong– deadly wrong– to deny any of your fellow Americans the right to vote in this country. There is no issue of States fights or national rights. There is only the struggle for human rights.

„It is empty to plead that the solution to the dilemmas of the present rests on the hands of the clock. The solution is in our hands.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: It is empty to plead that the solution to the dilemmas of the present rests on the hands of the clock. The solution is in our hands. Unless we are willing to yield up our destiny of greatness among the civilizations of history, Americans — white and Negro together — must be about the business of resolving the challenge which confronts us now.

„These are the enemies: poverty, ignorance, disease. They are the enemies and not our fellow man, not our neighbor. And these enemies too, poverty, disease and ignorance, we shall over, come.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: For Negroes are not the only victims. How many white children have gone uneducated, how many white families have lived in stark poverty, how many white lives have been scarred by fear, because we have wasted our energy and our substance to maintain the barriers of hatred and terror? So I say to all of you here, and to all in the Nation tonight, that those who appeal to you to hold on to the past do so at the cost of denying you your future. This great, rich, restless country can offer opportunity and education and hope to all: black and white, North and South, sharecropper and city dweller. These are the enemies: poverty, ignorance, disease. They are the enemies and not our fellow man, not our neighbor. And these enemies too, poverty, disease and ignorance, we shall over, come.

„There is no cause to doubt the American commitment. Our decision to stand firm has been matched by our desire for peace.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: Last year the nature of the war in Vietnam changed again. Swiftly increasing numbers of armed men from the North crossed the borders to join forces that were already in the South. Attack and terror increased, spurred and encouraged by the belief that the United States lacked the will to continue and that their victory was near. Despite our desire to limit conflict, it was necessary to act: to hold back the mounting aggression, to give courage to the people of the South, and to make our firmness clear to the North. Thus. we began limited air action against military targets in North Vietnam. We increased our fighting force to its present strength tonight of 190,000 men. These moves have not ended the aggression but they have prevented its success. The aims of the enemy have been put out of reach by the skill and the bravery of Americans and their allies—and by the enduring courage of the South Vietnamese who, I can tell you, have lost eight men last year for every one of ours. The enemy is no longer close to victory. Time is no longer on his side. There is no cause to doubt the American commitment. Our decision to stand firm has been matched by our desire for peace.

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„On this hallowed ground, heroic deeds were performed and eloquent words were spoken a century ago. We, the living, have not forgotten–and the world will never forget–the deeds or the words of Gettysburg. We honor them now“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: On this hallowed ground, heroic deeds were performed and eloquent words were spoken a century ago. We, the living, have not forgotten– and the world will never forget– the deeds or the words of Gettysburg. We honor them now as we join on this Memorial Day of 1963 in a prayer for permanent peace of the world and fulfillment of our hopes for universal freedom and justice.

„The issue of equal rights for American Negroes“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: In our time we have come to live with moments of great crisis. Our lives have been marked with debate about great issues; issues of war and peace, issues of prosperity and depression. But rarely in any time does an issue lay bare the secret heart of America itself. Rarely are we met with a challenge, not to our growth or abundance, our welfare or our security, but rather to the values and the purposes and the meaning of our beloved Nation. The issue of equal rights for American Negroes is such an issue. And should we defeat every enemy, should we double our wealth and conquer the stars, and still be unequal to this issue, then we will have failed as a people and as a nation. For with a country as with a person, "What is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?".

„The law cannot save those who deny it but neither can the law serve any who do not use it. The history of injustice and inequality is a history of disuse of the law. Law has not failed — and is not failing. We as a nation have failed ourselves by not trusting the law and by not using the law to gain sooner the ends of justice which law alone serves.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: The law cannot save those who deny it but neither can the law serve any who do not use it. The history of injustice and inequality is a history of disuse of the law. Law has not failed — and is not failing. We as a nation have failed ourselves by not trusting the law and by not using the law to gain sooner the ends of justice which law alone serves. If the white over-estimates what he has done for the Negro without the law, the Negro may under-estimate what he is doing and can do for himself with the law.

„Liberty was the second article of our covenant. It was self-government. It was our Bill of Rights.“

—  Lyndon B. Johnson
Context: Liberty was the second article of our covenant. It was self-government. It was our Bill of Rights. But it was more. America would be a place where each man could be proud to be himself: stretching his talents, rejoicing in his work, important in the life of his neighbors and his nation. This has become more difficult in a world where change and growth seem to tower beyond the control and even the judgment of men. We must work to provide the knowledge and the surroundings which can enlarge the possibilities of every citizen. The American covenant called on us to help show the way for the liberation of man. And that is today our goal. Thus, if as a nation there is much outside our control, as a people no stranger is outside our hope.

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