Free «Great Speeches» Essay Sample

The politics and history are connected with each other. One may say that the politics creates the history. And that will be a truthful saying. The statesmen of the most economically developed countries influence on the situation in the world. At all times, the speeches of great politicians turn the development of events up and down. We have a lot of examples of this in the American and European history. We can say that not only politicians influence on the historical development but great orators also. Martin Luther King Jr., John F. Kennedy and Jimmy Carter have changed the American and Afro-American history. The first one was the leader of the Black movement in the USA; the second one was the thirty-fifth president of the USA and the third one – the thirty-ninth president of America.

On September 25, 1961 John F. Kennedy was inaugurated. His inaugural speech was before the General Assembly. Kennedy`s speech after inauguration has become famous, as it was one of the main during the Cold War. It prevented the World War III from occurring when the Cuban Missile Crisis was (Dallek 235). The main point of his speech was the support of the worldwide peace and the appeal to the Soviet Union to move away their missiles from Cuba. The president began with saying that the victory of the Democratic Party was the celebration of freedom, a symbol of renewal and change (Hargrove 5). John F. Kennedy stressed that the world had been very different at that time. The 35th president pointed that the same revolutionary beliefs, for which forbearers had been fighting, were still at the issue around the globe (Hargrove 5). He believed that the equal rights of man came not from generosity of the state but from the hand of God. John F. Kennedy told all his spectators that the American nation would struggle for its liberty and peace in the country (Hargrove 6). To achieve the success in these actions, it would go through any obstacles. Being a representative of the Democratic Party, Kennedy showed the desire to “break the bonds of mass misery to those people in the huts and villages”. The president stood for the equal rights of different races and segments in the society. “If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few, who are rich” (7). He called up for the nation eight times in his speech.

Thurston Clarke in his book Ask Not: The Inauguration of John F. Kennedy and the Speech that Changed America points that the newly elected president promised freedom and help for all inhabitants of Latin America (Clarke).

The atomic bomb was the reason of the World War III and the foundation of the United Nations. Kennedy used the United Nations as a forum to strengthen the newly created countries and as the means to enlarge the territory of these countries (Hargrove 7). The president`s wish to make the rights of nations equal was observed in every action of his domestic policy. He had a meeting with Martin Luther King Jr., a struggler for freedom and equal rights of the black and white races in 1963.

The question of the Cuban Missile Crisis was raised in the inaugural speech as well (Hargrove 8). The U.S. and the Soviet Union had the atomic weapon, and the production of such weapon was rapidly developing. Kennedy stressed that the USA and the Soviet Union should develop their plans in order to control the weapon’s usage. As the world was bipolar when Kennedy`s inaugural speech was presented, he called for two nations to unite and “undo the heavy burdens… (and) let the oppressed go free” (9). John F. Kennedy offered to create a new endeavor of two great nations; he wanted the world to be just, where the rich and poor people are being equal (9). The main phrase of his speech contained the information that every American should not ask what his country could do for him but what he could do for his country (Clarke). Finally, Kennedy said that the government of America would lead the country in any case. He emphasized that the conscience and judgment of history would help to rule the country with God`s blessing.

John F. Kennedy`s inaugural speech prevented the world from the World War III and helped the black nation to fight for its rights. Since 1961, the democracy in the United States of America has begun its development. During his presidency, Kennedy made everything to make different races of the American nation equal.

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Martin Luther King Jr. is one of the most famous Afro-American orators. He studied in a theological seminary. He was an opener of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957. This conference was the method of struggle against the Civil Rights outrage. King started his famous speech called I Have a Dream from the steps of Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963 in Washington. This speech was a culmination of the March on Washington, which had been organized by Phillip Randolph as a symbol of resistance against the inequality of races in America. This speech nowadays is considered as a turning point in the Civil Rights struggle. Martin Luther King expressed his desire that all God`s children would walk together (Wall 75). King started his speech from saying that the Declaration proclaimed in America was for the people of all races including the African people also (Echols 5). King stressed in his speech that one hundred years later after the proclamation of Declaration, the Negro people were not free. The black race is still in its expulsion and has no rights in America (5). The Constitution and the Declaration of Independence did not keep the promise to guarantee “the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” (5). The “world citizen” said that in 1963 this was the time to make promises truthful and make America really a democratic country (Echols 6). He added that it was the time to stop isolation of black race and come on “the sunlight path of racial justice” (Echols). King insisted on the fact that peace and tranquility would prevail in America only when the Negroes would be given the equal rights with the white race (Echols 6). King pointed that he had a dream, which was connected with the American dream. This dream was that once the sons of former slaves and slave owners would gather together “at the table of brotherhood” (7). He asked all Negroes to “let the freedom ring”. He pointed on the citizens of New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Colorado, California, Georgia, Tennessee and Mississippi. These lands were densely populated by Negroes in America.

Drew Hansen in his book The Dream: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Speech that Inspired a Nation underlines that King`s speech had begun the alteration of the American thinking, but in a very slow way. He also expresses the meaning that King made his own model of free and equal America (Hansen).

Martin Luther King`s Jr. speech inspired the American nation, which resulted into different movements. The Black Power movement in the country and among African people was one of the main steps to the freedom of the African nation. This movement took place in Canada, the Caribbean and South Africa (Echols 10). The female liberation among the people of the white and black races became the symbol of struggle for the equal rights with men. Women struggled, especially for their right to vote. Also, the migrant farm worker`s movement began in the 1960s, and the gay and lesbian movements started (Echols).

In 1964, King got the Nobel Peace Prize for becoming the leader in the racial equality`s rising (Wall 76).

Jimmy Carter, the representative of the Democratic Party, became the 39th president of the United States of America. He had been the president from 1977 till 1981. The entire South, except Alabama and Mississippi, voted for him (Mattson). Jimmy Carter was named as a representative of the “New South”. The black members of the House of Representatives, E. Yang and mayor of Detroit K. Yang, supported the president. Having the support of people of different races, Jimmy Carter became, in fact, a representative of all American races. The newly elected president led a very strict foreign policy. During his presidency, the period of four wars between Egypt and Israel had finished. In 1978, they signed the treaty on the mutual understanding, peace and pass of Sinai Peninsula to Egypt. Carter became the initiator of negotiations with the Soviet Union about the limitation of strategic weapon. However, in 1979, when the Soviet troops came to Afghanistan, the diplomatic relations between America and the Soviet Union became worse and fully uncontrolled (Hanson). In the same year, the Islam Revolution in Iran had broken off. During this revolution, the representatives of the American embassy were caught. The negotiations were unsuccessful. In 1980, the operation on liberation ended with failure. In 1981, Jimmy Carter made the annual speech, which came into the history as the Malaise speech.

The economic situation in the country was becoming worse; and, in 1979, the economic catastrophe could start (Domke). The domestic policy was turned to the creation of the open government, to the overview of the federal tax system. In his presidential cabinet, two women were working, and that was the greatest quantity. Carter searched for the posts for national communities` representatives (Mattson). Jimmy Carter made everything to get the trust of the nation. He initiated the radio program Ask Carter, where each citizen could get an answer to the hottest questions. Unemployment and inflation had reached the high indexes. The prices for oil were very high, because of that president tried to take under the influence the countries of the Middle East. After the Cuban Missile Crisis, the sanctions against Cuba were imposed but Carter abandoned them during his presidency (Mattson).

On January 23, 1980, Jimmy Carter presented the annual address About the Condition of the Country. In that speech, he presented a new doctrine of foreign policy. The new zone of interests became the Persian Gulf region (Mattson). The USA could use the military force to protect that region. The country that attempted to get the Persian Gulf Region would break off the diplomatic relations in America. That was the point of doctrine. In accordance with Carter`s Doctrine, the USA could use the weapon against this country, as it had broken the interests of the country.

In 1981, Carter made a speech called Malaise. This speech was called this way as it cancelled out the reliability of the nation to the president. After the economic crisis, inflation and high energy costs, the Americans did not believe Carter. They thought in 1979 that they would not get a good future with Carter (Domke). Jimmy Carter said that “a crisis of confidence” endangered the spirit of each citizen and the national will had been lost (Domke 49). In the Malaise speech, the president also stressed that the representatives of different nations of the United States were the chosen nation by God. They had to struggle for peace and accomplish good actions in the name of good economic development of all the countries all over the world (Domke). The Malaise speech is a bad example of God strategy`s usage. Carter mentioned that whether the economic situation of the United States had been in decline, people would not believe in God. When in 1979 the Islamic Revolution began, more than sixty American citizens, the members of the American diplomatic mission in Teheran got into captivity. Carter mentioned in his speech that the belief in God of most of representatives of nation became visible (Domke 50).

This speech is an example of the opposition of president`s thoughts. From one side, he called Americans the chosen nation, but from another side he charged them with the lack of confidence and the national spirit. Since 1979, the Islam Fundamentalism had started to play the significant role in the policy of all Islamic countries as well as in America, one of the two world leaders. The downfall of liberation brought down Carter`s chances for victory in the next presidential elections.

Finally, the speeches of the popular American orators and politicians influenced on and inspired the American nation in different ways. At the times of Kennedy`s struggle for democracy and equality of rights from 1961 till 1963, the black movements started to grow. Kennedy in his inaugural speech turned to every citizen of the country and to the country in the whole. He used the word “Americans” four times. Kennedy`s speech is a bright example of God’s strategy usage. This speech changed the hostile situation in the world and resulted into the sanctions against Cuba. Martin Luther King`s speech strengthened the movements of Afro-Americans and different groups of untraditional thinking. This speech raised the women`s expectations in having the equal rights with men. Jimmy Carter`s speech was not a success, as the inflation and unemployment had raised when the president was in the office. Carter did not use God strategy properly, as he used the opposite thoughts that misled the nation. In 1981, the economic situation in America was complicated; and the nation needed to hear the persuasive speech of president. Instead, Jimmy Carter focused his address on the fights with the countries of Middle East of America.


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