Profiles in Presidential Sacrifice
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, in his radio address on Dec. 9, 1941:
"On the road ahead there lies hard work -- grueling work -- day and night, every hour and every minute.
"I was about to add that ahead there lies sacrifice for all of us. But it is not correct to use that word. The United States does not consider it a sacrifice to do all one can, to give one's best to our Nation when the Nation is fighting for its existence and its future life.
"It is not a sacrifice for any man, old or young, to be in the Army or the Navy of the United States. Rather is it a privilege. It is not a sacrifice for the industrialist or the wage earner, the farmer or the shopkeeper, the trainman or the doctor, to pay more taxes, to buy more bonds, to forego extra profits, to work longer or harder at the task for which he is best fitted. Rather is it a privilege."
Eleanor Roosevelt, writing in her personal journal during World War II:
"I think my husband would have been very much upset if the boys had not wanted to go into the war immediately, but he did not have to worry very much because they either were already in before the war began, or they went in immediately."
President John F. Kennedy, inaugural address, Jan. 20, 1961:
"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, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty. . . .
"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. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it -- and the glow from that fire can truly light the world.
"And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you -- ask what you can do for your country.
"My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man."
President George W. Bush, interview on PBS NewHour, Jan. 16, 2007:
"I think a lot of people are in this fight. I mean, they sacrifice peace of mind when they see the terrible images of violence on TV every night. I mean, we've got a fantastic economy here in the United States, but yet, when you think about the psychology of the country, it is somewhat down because of this war. . . . One thing we want during this war on terror is for people to feel like their life's moving on, that they're able to make a living and send their kids to college and put more money on the table."
President Bush, comments to reporters, May 13, 2008:
"Q. Mr. President, you haven't been golfing in recent years. Is that related to Iraq?
"THE PRESIDENT: Yes, it really is. I don't want some mom whose son may have recently died to see the Commander-in-Chief playing golf. I feel I owe it to the families to be as -- to be in solidarity as best as I can with them. And I think playing golf during a war just sends the wrong signal.
"Q. Mr. President, was there a particular moment or incident that brought you to that decision, or how did you come to that?
"THE PRESIDENT: No, I remember when de Mello, who was at the U.N., got killed in Baghdad as a result of these murderers taking this good man's life. And I was playing golf -- I think I was in central Texas -- and they pulled me off the golf course and I said, it's just not worth it anymore to do."
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