Dwight D. Eisenhower photo

Remarks at the Airport, Pendleton, Oregon.

September 23, 1954

Senator Cordon, Governor Patterson, distinguished guests, my fellow Americans:

I can well understand how I am right welcome to the young fry who got out of school to come out here today. But I must tell you all that I am deeply complimented by the presence of every person here today. When this schedule of mine was made up for the day, it was a crowded one. I am to end up this evening in Los Angeles, where again I am to make a speech, so there wasn't time for many little side trips.

I want to tell you one reason I would particularly like to have visited Pendleton. About 15 years ago I acquired a fishing shirt that is my prize possession. I have been wearing it ever since, when I went fishing--and they call it a Pendleton shirt. Now whether that is the right name or not, I don't know; but it's a good reason to visit here, because it's a good shirt.

When I say I am deeply complimented by your presence, I have a very distinct and personal reason for saying so. I have served in many odd corners of the world. I have been far away from America, for years at a time. I have been one of those who because of the services of our American soldiers have been specially honored by foreign governments-because of the services those soldiers performed.

But I have learned this: there is no honor one American can receive that is greater than the readiness of his fellow citizens to meet with him for a brief moment.

The fact you have come out from Pendleton this morning, impels me to try to leave with you an idea of what this administration is trying to do in Washington.

I think I can best say it this way: with everything, and in everything that affects your relationship to your Federal Government, that Government means to be liberal, human, sympathetic--always.

With everything that deals with your money--your pocketbooks--and the economy of your country, that Government tries to be conservative.

That, I think, sums up in about two sentences the philosophy of the Government you now have in Washington.

The colleagues I have--and the fellow workers from your State--have been people that have helped formulate that policy and help to support it.

I trust that it is one that will commend itself to you, because without that kind of philosophy, without that kind of effort, I believe that America's future cannot be as bright as it can be--a future that we all want to be peaceful, to be prosperous--for all of us; where everybody regardless of origin or race or religion has an equal chance; the kind of America that we have dreamed about from babyhood and which we can have, if we want it, and do not let ourselves be led astray by false promises and glittering generalities.

My friends, again thank you so much for coming out. I must be on my way. I am grateful for your presence and for these presents.

Note: The President spoke at 1:10 p.m.

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Remarks at the Airport, Pendleton, Oregon. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/232729

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