JFK SAID CIVIL RIGHTS PROBLEM WILL END BY PROVIDING FOR REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES
Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) President John F. Kennedy was asked at a news conference at the State Department Auditorium held 50 years ago today, July 17, 1963, to comment on reports to the Senate Commerce Committee that the civil rights movement was "Communist inspired."
The President responded that the Communists always attempt to "worm their way into every movement," but that there were very few remaining Communists in the United States and there is "no evidence that the demonstrations are Communist-inspired."
JFK went on to say that "it is easy to blame...the Attorney General or the President, and say...'If they would just stop talking' about the issue...the (civil rights) problem would just go away.'"
The President of the United States said that in his opinion...
"The way to make the problem go away...is to provide for a redress of grievances."
Earlier in the conference, JFK was asked if he thought the civil rights demonstrations, such as the coming August March on Washington, were a handicap to him.
"No...the...Washington march (will be) a peaceful assembly calling for a redress of grievances...that's in the great tradition.
You just can't tell people, 'Don't protest,' but on the other hand, 'We are not going to let you come into a store or restaurant.' It seems to me it is a two-way street."
Bayard Rustin and Cleveland Robinson
August 7, 1963
Photo by Orlando Fernandez
World Telegram and Sun
Library of Congress Image
Another reporter asked the President to appraise the status of his legislative program in Congress and inquired as to if JFK would "want the Congress to dispose of civil rights proposals before they begin concentrating on the tax bill.?"
Mr. Kennedy answered...
"No, I think the tax bill and the civil rights bill are both very important...and...Congress will take "a substantial amount of time" (to consider them.)
What I am interested in seeing is before the end of this year both bills enacted. That is what we will be judged on."
CONFERENCE AT POTSDAM BEGAN 68 YEARS AGO TODAY
Potsdam, Germany (JFK+50) Allied representatives arrived here in Potsdam*, just outside of Berlin, 68 years ago today, July 17, 1945, to begin discussions on postwar Europe.
*Potsdam is the capital city of Bradenburg, Germany and is located on the River Havel 15 miles SW of Berlin.
The "Big Three" representing their respective nations included: President Harry S Truman of the United States, Prime Minister Winston Churchill of Great Britain and Premier Joseph Stalin of the Soviet Union.
The conference was held at the Cecilienhof, the last palace built by the Hohenzollern family and completed in 1917.
Photo by Drow69 (2013)
The conference began with an aura of suspicion as each of the Allied nations representatives have their own interests at heart.
Issues discussed include the postwar border of Poland, occupation of Austria and war reparations. The conference closed on August 2, 1945.
"The Big 3" at Potsdam