Friday, April 17, 2015

Pennsylvania Charter of Privileges

The Pennsylvania Charter of Privileges became the governing constitutional document for William Penn's Pennsylvania colony in 1701, and lasted until the American Revolution in 1776. The Charter of Privileges is widely seen as an important step towards liberty and self-government in colonial America. The 50th anniversary of the Charter of Privileges was celebrated with the making of the Liberty Bell.

Pennsylvania Charter of Privileges

28 October 1701

WILLIAM PENN, Proprietary and Governor of the Province of Pennsylvania and Territories thereunto belonging, To all to whom these Presents shall come, sends Greeting. WHEREAS King CHARLES the Second, by His Letters Patents, under the Great Seal of England, bearing Date the Fourth Day of March, in the Year One Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty-one, was graciously pleased to give and grant unto me, and my Heirs and Assigns for ever, this Province of Pennsylvania, with divers great Powers and Jurisdictions for the well Government thereof.

AND WHEREAS the King's dearest Brother, JAMES Duke of YORK and ALBANY, etc. by his Deeds of Feoffment, under his Hand and Seal duly perfected, bearing Date the Twenty-Fourth Day of August, One Thousand Six Hundred Eighty and Two, did grant unto me, my Heirs and Assigns, all that Tract of Land, now called the Territories of Pennsylvania, together with Powers and Jurisdictions for the good Government thereof.

AND WHEREAS for the Encouragement of all the Freemen and Planters, that might be concerned in the said Province and Territories, and for the good Government thereof, I the said WILLIAM PENN, in the Year One Thousand Six Hundred Eighty and Three, for me, my Heirs and Assigns, did grant and confirm unto all the Freemen, Planters and Adventurers therein, divers Liberties, Franchises and Properties, as by the said Grant, entitled, The FRAME of the Government of the Province of Pennsylvania, and Territories thereunto belonging, in America, may appear; which Charter or Frame being found in some Parts of it, not so suitable to the present circumstances of the Inhabitants, was in the Third Month, in the Year One Thousand Seven Hundred, delivered up to me, by Six Parts of Seven of the Freemen of this Province and Territories, in General Assembly met, Provision being made in the said Charter, for that End and Purpose.

AND WHEREAS I was then pleased to promise, That I would restore the said Charter to them again, with necessary Alterations, or in lieu thereof, give them another, better adapted to answer the present Circumstances and Conditions of the said Inhabitants; which they have now, by their Representatives in General Assembly met at Philadelphia, requested me to grant.

KNOW YE THEREFORE, That for the further Well-being and good Government of the said Province, and Territories; and in Pursuance of the Rights and Powers before-mentioned, I the said William Penn do declare, grant and confirm, unto all the Freemen, Planters and Adventurers, and other Inhabitants of this Province and Territories, these following Liberties, Franchises and Privileges, so far as in me lies, to be held, enjoyed and kept, by the Freemen, Planters and Adventurers, and other Inhabitants of and in the said Province and Territories thereunto annexed, for ever.


BECAUSE no People can be truly happy, though under the greatest Enjoyment of Civil Liberties, if abridged of the Freedom of their Consciences, as to their Religious Profession and Worship: And Almighty God being the only Lord of Conscience, Father of Lights and Spirits; and the Author as well as Object of all divine Knowledge, Faith and Worship, who only doth enlighten the Minds, and persuade and convince the Understandings of People, I do hereby grant and declare, That no Person or Persons, inhabiting in this Province or Territories, who shall confess and acknowledge One almighty God, the Creator, Upholder and Ruler of the World; and profess him or themselves obliged to live quietly under the Civil Government, shall be in any Case molested or prejudiced, in his or their Person or Estate, because of his or their conscientious Persuasion or Practice, nor be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious Worship, Place or Ministry, contrary to his or their Mind, or to do or suffer any other Act or Thing, contrary to their religious Persuasion.

AND that all Persons who also profess to believe in Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World, shall be capable (notwithstanding their other Persuasions and Practices in Point of Conscience and Religion) to serve this Government in any Capacity, both legislatively and executively, he or they solemnly promising, when lawfully required, Allegiance to the King as Sovereign, and Fidelity to the Proprietary and Governor, and taking the Attests as now established by the Law made at New-Castle, in the Year One Thousand and Seven Hundred, entitled, an Act directing the Attests of several Officers and Ministers, as now amended and confirmed this present Assembly.


FOR the well governing of this Province and Territories, there shall be an Assembly yearly chosen, by the Freemen thereof, to consist of Four Persons out of each County, of most Note for Virtue, Wisdom and Ability, (or of a greater number at any Time. as the Governor and Assembly shall agree) upon the First Day of October for ever; and shall sit on the Fourteenth Day of the same Month, at Philadelphia, unless the Governor and Council for the Time being, shall see Cause to appoint another Place within the said Province or Territories: Which Assembly shall have Power to choose a Speaker and other their Officers; and shall be Judges of the Qualifications and Elections of their own Members; sit upon their own Adjournment; appoint Committees; prepare Bills in order to pass into Laws; impeach Criminals, and redress Grievances; and shall have all other Powers and Privileges of an Assembly, according to the Rights of the free-born Subjects of England, and as is usual in any of the King's Plantations in America.

AND if any County or Counties, shall refuse or neglect to choose their respective Representatives as aforesaid, or if chosen, do not meet to serve in Assembly, those who are so chosen and met, shall have the full Power of an Assembly, in as ample Manner as if all the Representatives had been chosen and met, provided they are not less than Two Thirds of the whole Number that ought to meet.

AND that the Qualifications of Electors and Elected, and all other Matters and Things relating to Elections of Representatives to serve in Assemblies, though not herein particularly expressed, shall be and remain as by a Law of this Government, made at New-Castle in the Year One thousand Seven Hundred, entitled, An Act to ascertain the Number of Members of Assembly, and to regulate the Elections.


THAT the Freemen in each respective County, at the Time and Place of Meeting for Electing their Representatives to serve in Assembly, may as often as there shall be Occasion, choose a double Number of Persons to present to the Governor for Sheriffs and Coroners to serve for Three Years, if so long they behave themselves well; out of which respective Elections and Presentments, the Governor shall nominate and commission one for each of the said Offices, the Third Day after such Presentment, or else the First named in such Presentment, for each Office as aforesaid, shall stand and serve in that Office for the Time before respectively limited; and in Case of Death or Default, such Vacancies shall be supplied by the Governor, to serve to the End of the said Term.

PROVIDED ALWAYS, That if the said Freemen shall at any Time neglect or decline to choose a Person or Persons for either or both the aforesaid Offices, then and in such Case, the Persons that are or shall be in the respective Offices of Sheriffs or Coroners, at the Time of Election, shall remain therein, until they shall be removed by another Election as aforesaid.

AND that the Justices of the respective Counties shall or may nominate and present to the Governor Three Persons, to serve for Clerk of the Peace for the said County, when there is a Vacancy, one of which the Governor shall commission within Ten Days after such Presentment, or else the First nominated shall serve in the said Office during good Behavior.


THAT the Laws of this Government shall be in this Stile, viz. By the Governor, with the Consent and Approbation of the Freemen in General Assembly met; and shall be, after Confirmation by the Governor, forthwith recorded in the Rolls Office, and kept at Philadelphia, unless the Governor and Assembly shall agree to appoint another Place.


THAT all Criminals shall have the same Privileges of Witnesses and Council as their Prosecutors.


THAT no Person or Persons shall or may, at any Time hereafter, be obliged to answer any Complaint, Matter or Thing whatsoever, relating to Property, before the Governor and Council, or in any other Place, but in ordinary Course of Justice, unless Appeals thereunto shall be hereafter by Law appointed.


THAT no Person within this Government, shall be licensed by the Governor to keep an Ordinary Tavern or House of Public Entertainment, but such who are first recommended to him, under the Hands of the Justices of the respective Counties, signed in open Court; which Justices are and shall be hereby empowered, to suppress and forbid any Person, keeping such Public-House as aforesaid, upon their Misbehavior, on such Penalties as the Law doth or shall direct; and to recommend others from time to time, as they shall see Occasion.


IF any person, through Temptation or Melancholy, shall destroy himself; his Estate, real and personal, shall notwithstanding descend to his Wife and Children, or Relations, as if he had died a natural Death; and if any Person shall be destroyed or killed by Casualty or Accident, there shall be no Forfeiture to the Governor by reason thereof.

AND no Act, Law or Ordinance whatsoever, shall at any Time hereafter, be made or done, to alter, change or diminish the Form or Effect of this Charter, or of any Part or Clause therein, contrary to the true Intent and Meaning thereof, without the Consent of the Governor for the Time being, and Six Parts of Seven of the Assembly met.

BUT because the Happiness of Mankind depends so much upon the Enjoying of Liberty of their Consciences as aforesaid, I do hereby solemnly declare, promise and grant, for me, my Heirs and Assigns, That the First Article of this Charter relating to Liberty of Conscience, and every Part and Clause therein, according to the true Intent and Meaning thereof, shall be kept and remain, without any Alteration, inviolably for ever.

AND LASTLY, I the said William Penn, Proprietary and Governor of the Province of Pennsylvania, and Territories thereunto belonging, for myself, my Heirs and Assigns, have solemnly declared, granted and confirmed, and do hereby solemnly declare, grant and confirm, That neither I, my Heirs or Assigns, shall procure or do any Thing or Things whereby the Liberties in this Charter contained and expressed, nor any Part thereof, shall be infringed or broken: And if any thing shall be procured or done, by any Person or Persons, contrary to these Presents, it shall be held of no Force or Effect.

IN WITNESS whereof, I the said William Penn, at Philadelphia in Pennsylvania, have unto this present Charter of Liberties, set my Hand and broad Seal, this Twenty-Eighth Day of October, in the Year of Our Lord One Thousand Seven Hundred and One, being the Thirteenth Year of the Reign of King WILLIAM the Third, over England, Scotland, France and Ireland, etc. and the Twenty-First Year of my Government.

AND NOTWITHSTANDING the Closure and Test of this present Charter as aforesaid, I think fit to add this following Proviso thereunto, as Part of the same, That is to say, That notwithstanding any Clause or Clauses in the above-mentioned Charter, obliging the Province and Territories to join together in Legislation, I am content, and do hereby declare, that if the Representatives of the Province and Territories shall not hereafter agree to join together in Legislation, and that the same shall be signified unto me, or my Deputy, in open Assembly, or otherwise from under the Hands and Seals of the Representatives, for the Time being, of the Province and Territories, or the major Part of either of them, at any Time within Three Years from the Date hereof, that in such Case, the Inhabitants of each of the Three Counties of this Province, shall not have less than Eight Persons to represent them in Assembly, for the Province; and the Inhabitants of the Town of Philadelphia (when the said Town is incorporated) Two Persons to represent them in Assembly; and the Inhabitants of each County in the Territories, shall have as many Persons to represent them in a distinct Assembly for the Territories, as shall be by them requested as aforesaid.

NOTWITHSTANDING which Separation of the Province and Territories, in Respect of Legislation, I do hereby promise, grant and declare, That the Inhabitants of both Province and Territories, shall separately enjoy all other Liberties, Privileges and Benefits, granted jointly to them in this Charter, any Law, Usage or Custom of this Government heretofore made and practiced, or any Law made and passed by this General Assembly, to the Contrary hereof, notwithstanding.


THIS CHARTER OF PRIVILEGES being distinctly read in Assembly; and the whole and every Part thereof, being approved of and agreed to, by us, we do thankfully receive the same from our Proprietary and Governor, at Philadelphia, this Twenty-Eighth Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and One. Signed on Behalf, and by Order of the Assembly,

Proprietary and Governor's Council.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Gun Guide for People Who Know Nothing About Firearms

Click image to find it on Amazon.
The Gun Guide for People Who Know Nothing About Firearms is an excellent introduction to firearms written by Steven Gregersen. The book is inexpensive ($7.99) and short (102 pages), yet very informative and surprisingly detailed. Mr. Gregersen does an excellent job of explaining the material in an interesting and understandable way by combining technical details with his personal experiences. He managed to squeeze a lot of information into a short book by not getting lost-in-the-weeds with too much unnecessary detail or including a lot of fluff that is found in thicker books.

In his Introduction, Mr. Gregersen writes "What I hope to accomplish is to take those who are new to the world of firearms and explain the basics of how firearms work, the strengths and weakness of every major type of firearm you're likely to encounter, and in the final section, how to evaluate firearm and ammunition choices. When you've finished reading this book you'll be equipped to make an informed purchase that takes into account your budget and your needs."

In my opinion, he accomplishes this goal, and more. I grew up in the Old South, hunting with my grandfathers when I was still in my single digits. I'm quite experienced with long guns (less so with handguns). Despite my experience, I actually learned a number of things from the book, so I would say it isn't just for newbies.

To give you an idea of the scope of the book, here is the table of contents:
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: Firearms
  • Chapter 2: Firearm Actions
  • Chapter 3: Sights
  • Chapter 4: Triggers and Safety Mechanisms
  • Chapter 5: Ammunition
  • Chapter 6: Firearms Uses
  • Chapter 7: Firearm and Ammo Assessment 
  • Chapter 8: Training, Safety, and Legal Issues
  • Conclusion
In the first chapter, Mr. Gregersen explains the difference between handguns and long guns, including the variations within those categories, and explains the strengths and weaknesses of each. Also explained is rifling vs. smooth-bore, modified vs. full choke, and specialty barrels, chokes and other modifications. Several photos and diagrams are included (in this chapter and throughout the book).

Chapter two explains how firearms work, and includes sub-sections on full-automatic and semiautomatic, pump action, bolt action, break-open action, lever action, revolvers, repeaters, among others. Chapter tree explains the various types of sights, and the advantages and disadvantages of each.  Chapter four is a similar discussion on triggers and safeties. Chapter five is a really good discussion of ammunition types.

Chapter six explains the uses of firearms and discusses several gun-control fallacies, including a great job of exposing the fake (and ridiculous) category of assault weapons. Mr. Gregersen closes the chapter with this statement "Criminals are criminals because they break the law. Gun laws are no exception. The guy who sells drugs to your children isn't going to obey gun laws."

Chapter seven explains how to evaluate firearms that you are considering purchasing. Chapter eight gives some basic information on safety, training, and legal issues.

If you are new to firearms, or feel that your knowledge is incomplete or needs refreshing, I would highly recommend this book to you. It would also make a great gift to family or friends who are new to prepping and firearms. Click here to find it on Amazon.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Marking the One Year Anniversary of the Abduction of the Chibok Schoolgirls

04/14/2015 Washington DC (International Christian Concern) - Today is the anniversary of Boko Haram (BH) kidnapping 276 young girls from Chibok in northern Nigeria. On the night of April 14, 2014, Islamist militants from BH stormed the Chibok Government Secondary School and kidnapped scores of mostly Christian teenage girls. Subsequently, BH released a statement saying that they would sell the girls off as slaves into a lifetime of forced marriage and sexual servitude. We urge all of those concerned to remember and pray for the 219 that remain in captivity.

BH is an extremist Islamic group that is notorious for killing Christians who refuse to deny their faith. They have waged years of terror in northern Nigeria, abducting young girls, coercing conversions at gunpoint, attacking minorities, and raping women, with the expressed mission to establish an Islamic state in Africa.

The Chibok incident quickly drew global attention and went viral on social media. By early May 2014, "Bring Back Our Girls," was tweeted more than 480,000 times, according to the Daily Mail. Even First Lady Michelle Obama appeared on television calling for the girls' release. "In these girls, Barack and I see our own daughters ...we can only imagine the anguish their parents are feeling right now," she said.

Parents of the missing girls have lived in misery for the past year as they continue to search for answers. Chibok community leader Dr. Pogu Bitrus reported in July 2014, only 100 days after the kidnapping, that, "(As far as I know, at least) three parents have died from related heart attacks resulting from the shock they have sustained from which they never recovered. Then four others were killed in subsequent Boko Haram attacks in the area making a total of number of at least seven. Others are in very serious need of medical and psychological help." By February 2015, the number of parents who have died reportedly rose to 13.

Since the raid, dozens of girls have escaped, but the whereabouts and condition of the missing hundreds remain a mystery. Survivors have reported remarkably consistent testimonies of being beaten into denying their Christian faith, facing threats to be sold into marriage to single Boko Haram fighters, and having limbs broken if they were caught trying to escape.

One year later, the challenge of finding all of the girls and returning them safely home is enormous and hope is beginning to fade. Many may have already been forced to marry their captors. Furthermore, military incursions into BH strongholds to liberate villages have left insurgents scattered and retreating from towns they once held. No signs of the girls have turned up.

In late March, BH escapee Mbutu Papka reported that the girls were being held in a BH compound in Gwoza, Borno State. "In the camp at Gwoza, there were clear demarcations between where people were kept. The Chibok girls, other captives, and Boko Haram members and their family members all had their separate areas... The security in the area where the girls are kept is visibly different and much tighter," she said.

Many wonder if the girls are even alive. During the Nigerian military's siege of Bama in Borno State, sources said that BH fighters murdered their wives. "They killed their wives so that the women would not get remarried to unbelievers if their husbands die in the fierce battles with Nigerian soldiers," one witness said. In addition, insurgents reportedly used women as human shields, and massacred dozens of people in Bama whose bodies have yet to be identified.

Still, no one has been able to positively identify any bodies as any of the missing Chibok girls. If they are still alive, they will certainly continue to face physical, psychological, and sexual abuse. For Christian girls, the threat of abuse is significantly heightened because of their faith.

International Christian Concern's Troy Augustine, Regional Manager for Africa said, "One cannot imagine the unspeakable horrors that these young girls from Chibok have had to endure at the hands of Boko Haram. The stories of survivors tell a grim, but real, tale of torture and perseverance. Marking the anniversary of such an atrocity is the sad reality of persecution in Africa. Please pray for the survival and quick release of these girls who have had to go through unimaginable brutality."

This news story is from a press release by International Christian Concern

Monday, April 13, 2015

Harkins' "Farewell Letter to the American People"

George W. Harkins (1810-1861) was an important chief of the Choctaw tribe during the time of the brutal Indian removals. An attorney, Harkins wrote the letter known as the "Farewell Letter to the American People" protesting the removal of the Choctaw tribe from their ancestral land and resettlement in the Indian Territory in what is now Oklahoma. The letter was widely published in newspapers throughout the United States. Historians consider it one of the most important documents in Native American history. 

February 25, 1832

To the American People:

It is with considerable diffidence that I attempt to address the American people, knowing and feeling sensibly my incompetency; and believing that your highly and well improved minds would not be well entertained by the address of a Choctaw. But having determined to emigrate west of the Mississippi river this fall, I have thought proper in bidding you farewell to make a few remarks expressive of my views, and the feelings that actuate me on the subject of our removal.

Believing that our all is at stake and knowing that you readily sympathize with the distressed of every country, I confidently throw myself upon your indulgence and ask you to listen patiently. I do not arrogate to myself the prerogative of deciding upon the expediency of the late treaty, yet I feel bound as a Choctaw, to give a distinct expression of my feelings on that interesting, (and to the Choctaws), all important subject.

We were hedged in by two evils, and we chose that which we thought the least. Yet we could not recognize the right that the state of Mississippi had assumed, to legislate for us. — Although the legislature of the state were qualified to make laws for their own citizens, that did not qualify them to become law makers to a people that were so dissimilar in manners and customs as the Choctaws are to the Mississippians. Admitting that they understood the people, could they remove that mountain of prejudice that has ever obstructed the streams of justice, and prevent their salutary influence from reaching my devoted countrymen. We as Choctaws rather chose to suffer and be free, than live under the degrading influence of laws, which our voice could not be heard in their formation.

Much as the state of Mississippi has wronged us, I cannot find in my heart any other sentiment than an ardent wish for her prosperity and happiness.

I could cheerfully hope, that those of another age and generation may not feel the effects of those oppressive measures that have been so illiberally dealt out to us; and that peace and happiness may be their reward. Amid the gloom and horrors of the present separation, we are cheered with a hope that ere long we shall reach our destined land, and that nothing short of the basest acts of treachery will ever be able to wrest it from us, and that we may live free. Although your ancestors won freedom on the field of danger and glory, our ancestors owned it as their birthright, and we have had to purchase it from you as the vilest slaves buy their freedom.

Yet it is said that our present movements are our own voluntary acts — such is not the case. We found ourselves like a benighted stranger, following false guides, until he was surrounded on every side, with fire and water. The fire was certain destruction, and a feeble hope was left him of escaping by water. A distant view of the opposite shore encourages the hope; to remain would be inevitable annihilation. Who would hesitate, or who would say that his plunging into the water was his own voluntary act? Painful in the extreme is the mandate of our expulsion. We regret that it should proceed from the mouth of our professed friend, for whom our blood was co-mingled with that of his bravest warriors, on the field of danger and death.

But such is the instability of professions. The man who said that he would plant a stake and draw a line around us, that never should be passed, was the first to say he could not guard the lines, and drew up the stake and wiped out all traces of the line. I will not conceal from you my fears, that the present grounds may be removed. I have my foreboding; who of us can tell after witnessing what has already been done, what the next force may be.

I ask you in the name of justice, for repose for myself and for my injured people. Let us alone — we will not harm you, we want rest. We hope, in the name of justice, that another outrage may never be committed against us, and that we may for the future be cared for as children, and not driven about as beasts, which are benefited by a change of pasture.

Taking an example from the American government, and knowing the happiness which its citizens enjoy under the influence of mild republican institutions, it is the intention of our countrymen to form a government assimilated to that of our white brethren in the United States, as nearly as their condition will permit.

We know that in order to protect the rights and secure the liberties of the people, no government approximates so nearly to perfection as the one to which we have alluded. As east of the Mississippi we have been friends, so west we will cherish the same feelings with additional fervour; and although we may be removed to the desert, still we shall look with fond regard, upon those who have promised us their protection. Let that feeling be reciprocated.

Friends, my attachment to my native land was strong — that cord is now broken; and we must go forth as wanderers in a strange land! I must go — let me entreat you to regard us with feelings of kindness, and when the hand of oppression is stretched against us, let me hope that every part of the United States, filling the mountains and valleys, will echo and say stop, you have no power, we are the sovereign people, and our friends shall no more be disturbed. We ask you for nothing that is incompatible with your other duties.

We go forth sorrowful, knowing that wrong has been done. Will you extend to us your sympathizing regards until all traces of disagreeable oppositions are obliterated, and we again shall have confidence in the professions of our white brethren.

Here is the land of our progenitors, and here are their bones; they left them as a sacred deposit, and we have been compelled to venerate its trust; it is dear to us, yet we cannot stay, my people are dear to me, with them I must go. Could I stay and forget them and leave them to struggle alone, unaided, unfriended, and forgotten by our great father? I should then be unworthy the name of a Choctaw, and be a disgrace to my blood. I must go with them; my destiny is cast among the Choctaw people. If they suffer, so will I; if they prosper, then I will rejoice. Let me again ask you to regard us with feelings of kindness.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Kennedy's Inaugural Address

"Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You"

Delivered on January 20, 1961

We observe today not a victory of party, but a celebration of freedom — symbolizing an end, as well as a beginning — signifying renewal, as well as change. For I have sworn before you and Almighty God the same solemn oath our forebears prescribed nearly a century and three quarters ago.

The world is very different now. For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe — the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.

We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution. Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans — born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage — and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this Nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.

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.

This much we pledge — and more.

To those old allies whose cultural and spiritual origins we share, we pledge the loyalty of faithful friends. United, there is little we cannot do in a host of cooperative ventures. Divided, there is little we can do — for we dare not meet a powerful challenge at odds and split asunder.

To those new States whom we welcome to the ranks of the free, we pledge our word that one form of colonial control shall not have passed away merely to be replaced by a far more iron tyranny. We shall not always expect to find them supporting our view. But we shall always hope to find them strongly supporting their own freedom — and to remember that, in the past, those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger ended up inside.

To those peoples in the huts and villages across the globe struggling to break the bonds of mass misery, we pledge our best efforts to help them help themselves, for whatever period is required — not because the Communists may be doing it, not because we seek their votes, but because it is right. If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.

To our sister republics south of our border, we offer a special pledge — to convert our good words into good deeds — in a new alliance for progress — to assist free men and free governments in casting off the chains of poverty. But this peaceful revolution of hope cannot become the prey of hostile powers. Let all our neighbours know that we shall join with them to oppose aggression or subversion anywhere in the Americas. And let every other power know that this Hemisphere intends to remain the master of its own house.

To that world assembly of sovereign states, the United Nations, our last best hope in an age where the instruments of war have far outpaced the instruments of peace, we renew our pledge of support — to prevent it from becoming merely a forum for invective — to strengthen its shield of the new and the weak — and to enlarge the area in which its writ may run.

Finally, to those nations who would make themselves our adversary, we offer not a pledge but a request: that both sides begin anew the quest for peace, before the dark powers of destruction unleashed by science engulf all humanity in planned or accidental self-destruction.

We dare not tempt them with weakness. For only when our arms are sufficient beyond doubt can we be certain beyond doubt that they will never be employed.

But neither can two great and powerful groups of nations take comfort from our present course — both sides overburdened by the cost of modern weapons, both rightly alarmed by the steady spread of the deadly atom, yet both racing to alter that uncertain balance of terror that stays the hand of mankind's final war.

So let us begin anew — remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.

Let both sides explore what problems unite us instead of belabouring those problems which divide us.

Let both sides, for the first time, formulate serious and precise proposals for the inspection and control of arms — and bring the absolute power to destroy other nations under the absolute control of all nations.

Let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its terrors. Together let us explore the stars, conquer the deserts, eradicate disease, tap the ocean depths, and encourage the arts and commerce.

Let both sides unite to heed in all corners of the earth the command of Isaiah — to "undo the heavy burdens -. and to let the oppressed go free."

And if a beachhead of cooperation may push back the jungle of suspicion, let both sides join in creating a new endeavour, not a new balance of power, but a new world of law, where the strong are just and the weak secure and the peace preserved.

All this will not be finished in the first 100 days. Nor will it be finished in the first 1,000 days, nor in the life of this Administration, nor even perhaps in our lifetime on this planet. But let us begin.

In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than in mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered the call to service surround the globe.

Now the trumpet summons us again — not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need; not as a call to battle, though embattled we are — but a call to bear the burden of a long twilight struggle, year in and year out, "rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation" — a struggle against the common enemies of man: tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself.

Can we forge against these enemies a grand and global alliance, North and South, East and West, that can assure a more fruitful life for all mankind? Will you join in that historic effort?

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 shank 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 endeavour 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.

Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own.