John F. Kennedy photo

Remarks in Houston to the League of United Latin American Citizens.

November 21, 1963

Mr. Chairman, Mr. Vice President, Mrs. Johnson, ladies and gentlemen:

My wife and I are very proud to come to this meeting. This organization has done a good deal for this State and for our country, and I am particularly glad that it emphasizes not only the opportunity for all Americans a chance to develop their talents, education for boys and girls, so that they can pursue those talents to the very end of their ability, but also because you remind Americans of the very important links that we have with our sister Republics in this hemisphere.

One of the things which I have taken the greatest interest in has been attempting to pursue an example which was long neglected. And that was the one set by President Franklin Roosevelt to emphasize that the United States is not only good neighbors, which we were in the thirties, but also friends and associates in a great effort to build in this hemisphere an Alliance for Progress, an effort to prove that in this hemisphere, from top to bottom, in all of the countries whether they be Latin or North American, that there is a common commitment to freedom, to equality of opportunity, to a chance for all to prove that prosperity can be the handmaiden of freedom, and to show to the world a very bright star here in this country and, indeed, in the entire hemisphere. So I am glad to be here today.

In order that my words will be even clearer, I am going to ask my wife to say a few words to you also.

Note: The President spoke at the Rice Hotel in Houston, Tex. His opening words referred to Joe A. Garza, State director of the League of United Latin American Citizens, and to Vice President and Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson. Following the President's remarks. Mrs. Kennedy spoke briefly in Spanish.

John F. Kennedy, Remarks in Houston to the League of United Latin American Citizens. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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