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Kennedy: America Carries the Worldwide Struggle from Freedom

Mar. 1, 1962 - President Kennedy warned Americans today that they must bear the heavy burden of protecting freedom throughout the world for years to come. Receiving the American Legion’s Distinguished Service Medal in the White House rose garden, Mr. Kennedy told several hundred Legionnaires: “We are only 6% of the world’s population, yet we carry this struggle in all parts of the globe.” Recalling the words of Thomas Paine, the Revolutionary War essayist, the President said, “The real patriot is not the sunshine patriot,” but the one who is willing to stand the long test of service. At the rose garden ceremony, the Chief Executive told the Legionnaires that the U.S. expected other countries to carry their share of the fight to protect freedom. But, he said, “we don’t suggest we should fail or flinch or become fatigued.”

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