Copy of Say Mean Matter JFK Civil Rights Speech

Say Mean Matter: Kennedy’s Civil Rights Speech
What does the text say?
Cite text (quotation)
What does the author mean?
How do I interpret this?
Read “between the lines.” INFER.
Why does it matter to me or others?
What is the significance?
What are the implications?
“I hope that every American,
regardless of where he lives,
will stop and examine his
conscience about this and
other related incidents… the
rights of every man are
diminished when the rights of
one man are threatened.”
Kennedy states that the Civil Rights issues in
Alabama are important no matter where you
live, and he wants each American to examine
his or her response to the events taking place
in the 1960s. The rights of any segment of the
population being threatened is a threat to all of
the population.
Kennedy is reminding Americans that a problem
for some Americans is a problem for all
Americans. Just because a person does not live
in Alabama or is not black does not mean that
he or she should not do anything within his or
her power to work towards civil rights. That a
white man was saying this gave hope to black
“This is not a sectional issue.
Difficulties over segregation
and discrimination exist in
every city, in every State of the
Union, producing in many
cities a rising tide of discontent
that threatens the public
Changing a law does not change a person’s
Passing laws that support Civil Rights is very
important, but Americans must also make sure
their personal belief system supports civil rights
for all.
It is past time for goals of The Emancipation
Proclamation to become reality in daily lives of
black citizens in America. Americans must join to
make this happen.
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