Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Remarks to the YMCA Youth Governors' Conference.

June 29, 1965

I KNOW who you're really applauding for and I am so proud that you gave him such a warm welcome.

This is the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Callaghan, of Great Britain. And the distinguished Secretary of the Treasury I think you know. And this is the distinguished British Ambassador, Mr. Patrick Dean.

I am sorry that I have been delayed, but I have been delayed in a good cause. We have been talking about the problems that affect you and that will affect governors in many places in the world.

Bernard Shaw once said that "youth is too precious to be wasted on the young." And if he could be here today to greet you governors, I think he might retract his statement.

For the young people of today are a generation that is excitingly different from any which has come before. I have said upon many occasions, as the young men and women come here to visit the White House, that you are the committed generation. You have inherited a world which seethes with crises and danger, yet you face these problems and you don't shirk them.

You have courage and you have imagination. And that is demonstrated in our Peace Corps throughout the world, in our job opportunities program, where we now have more than 500,000 young people working, and it is demonstrated in the rice paddies of Viet-Nam as we meet here this afternoon.

So, it is a great pleasure for me to welcome you to the White House and to say to you--of this committed generation--that you are much better prepared to face the problems that come to you than were any of us who face the ones that we are dealing with today.

We hope that your studies here and your visit here will improve your general knowledge of the conditions we face and will better equip you to provide leadership in dealing with those problems.

We are at the moment living in a relatively peaceful and prosperous world, and the goal of your Nation and our allies, who are associated with us here today, is, first of all, peace for ourselves and all the peoples of the world. And second, for prosperous people to do something about the ancient enemies of mankind--disease, and ignorance, and illiteracy that stalks so many parts of the world.

I thank you for coming here. I am sorry my visit will be limited. You give us all inspiration by your interest and your leadership, and I hope you can come back again soon.

Thank you.

Note: The President spoke at 6:35 p.m. in the Fish Room at the White House.

The third annual YMCA Youth Governors' Conference was attended by 42 young people from throughout the United States, chosen in Statewide elections by the members of YMCA's Hi-Y programs. The conference, which was sponsored by the leader's Digest Foundation of Pleasantville, N.Y., was held in Washington June 25-30, 1965.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Remarks to the YMCA Youth Governors' Conference. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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