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Weekly Address: Reversing a Troubling Trend in Food SafetyIn this week's address, President Barack Obama makes key announcements regarding the safety of our nation's food. "We are a nation built on the strength of individual initiative. But there are certain things that we can't do on our own. There are certain things that only a government can do. And one of those things is ensuring that the foods we eat, and the medicines we take, are safe and don't cause us harm."Watch Your Weekly Address below to learn more about the President's measures to make the food that lands on America's dinner tables safer. mp4视频下载 03/64548。

My Countrymen: No one can contemplate current conditions without finding much that is satisfying and still more that is encouraging.在考察当前形势时,任何人都不难看到,令人满意的东西实在很多,而鼓舞人心之处则更是不可胜记。Our own country is leading the world in the general justment to the results of the great conflict.我国正在全世界率先进行那场巨大冲突之后的全面重建工作。Many of its burdens will bear heavily upon us for years, and the secondary and indirect effects we must expect to experience for some time.今后数年内,我们将背负许多重担,同时也必须准备在某些时候承受那些次要而间接的后果。But we are beginning to comprehend more definitely what course should be pursued, what remedies ought to be applied, what actions should be taken for our deliverance,但目前我们正开始更确切地考虑,我们应当遵循何种方针,应当运用何种补救措施,应当采取什么行动以解决自己的问题;and are clearly manifesting a determined will faithfully and conscientiously to adopt these methods of relief.而且我们正清楚地表明我们意志坚定,决心忠实而自觉地实施这些扶危济困的措施。Aly we have sufficiently rearranged our domestic affairs so that confidence has returned, business has revived,由于我们在内政方面已进行了充分调整,因而信心得到恢复,商业得以复兴,and we appear to be entering an era of prosperity which is gradually reaching into every part of the Nation.全国各地正在逐步进入一个繁荣的时期。Realizing that we can not live unto ourselves alone,we have contributed of our resources同时我们也意识到,我们不能孤立地生存下去,因而我们提供了财力和建议,and our counsel to the relief of the suffering and the settlement of the disputes among the European nations.以帮助欧洲各国解除困苦和平息争端。Because of what America is and what America has done, a firmer courage, a higher hope, inspires the heart of all humanity.因为美国过去所取得的成就和目前的现状,全人类便具有了更为坚定的勇气和更为崇高的愿望,不觉精神为之一振。It will be well not to be too much disturbed by the thought of either isolation or entanglement of pacifists and militarists.我们究竟应当奉行孤立主义还是与那些和平主义者和军国主义者纠缠不清,这种考虑实在不必使我们受到过多的困扰。The physical configuration of the earth has separated us from all of the Old World,地球的自然构造使我们同整个旧世界分隔开来,but the common brotherhood of man, the highest law of all our being, has united us by inseparable bonds with all humanity.但共同的兄弟情谊这一人类最高法则,却用不可分割的纽带将我们与全人类联结在一起。02/444005。

President Obama's remarks on the earthquake in Haiti在加勒比岛国海地本月12日发生强烈地震后,国际社会纷纷伸出援手,表示将向海地提供人道主义援助。美国总统奥巴马13日就海地遭遇强震发表讲话,承诺美国将迅速积极反应,全力帮助海地救灾。以下是他讲话的全文。Good morning, everybody. This morning I want to extend to the people of Haiti the deep condolences and unwavering support of the American people following yesterday’s terrible earthquake.We are just now beginning to learn the extent of the devastation, but the reports and images that we’ve seen of collapsed hospitals, crumbled homes, and men and women carrying their injured neighbors through the streets are truly heart-wrenching. Indeed, for a country and a people who are no strangers to hardship and suffering, this tragedy seems especially cruel and incomprehensible. Our thoughts and prayers are also with the many Haitian-Americans around our country who do not yet know the fate of their families and loved ones back home.I have directed my administration to respond with a swift, coordinated, and aggressive effort to save lives. The people of Haiti will have the full support of the ed States in the urgent effort to rescue those trapped beneath the rubble, and to deliver the humanitarian relief — the food, water and medicine — that Haitians will need in the coming days. In that effort, our government, especially USAID and the Departments of State and Defense, are working closely together and with our partners in Haiti, the region, and around the world.Right now our efforts are focused on several urgent priorities. First, we’re working quickly to account for U.S. embassy personnel and their families in Port-au-Prince, as well as the many American citizens who live and work in Haiti. Americans trying to locate family members in Haiti are encouraged to contact the State Department at (888) 407-4747. I’m going to repeat that — (888) 407-4747.Second, we’ve mobilized resources to help rescue efforts. Military overflights have assessed the damage, and by early afternoon our civilian disaster assistance team are beginning to arrive. Search-and-rescue teams from Florida, Virginia and California will arrive throughout today and tomorrow, and more rescue and medical equipment and emergency personnel are being prepared.Because in disasters such as this the first hours and days are absolutely critical to saving lives and avoiding even greater tragedy, I have directed my teams to be as forward-leaning as possible in getting the help on the ground and coordinating with our international partners as well.Third, given the many different resources that are needed, we are taking steps to ensure that our government acts in a unified way. My national security team has led an interagency effort overnight. And to ensure that we coordinate our effort, going forward, I’ve designated the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Dr. Rajiv Shah, to be our government’s unified disaster coordinator.Now, this rescue and recovery effort will be complex and challenging. As we move resources into Haiti, we will be working closely with partners on the ground, including the many N.G.O.’s from Haiti and across Haiti, the ed Nations Stabilization Mission, which appears to have suffered its own losses, and our partners in the region and around the world. This must truly be an international effort.Finally, let me just say that this is a time when we are reminded of the common humanity that we all share. With just a few hundred miles of ocean between us and a long history that binds us together, Haitians are neighbors of the Americas and here at home. So we have to be there for them in their hour of need.Despite the fact that we are experiencing tough times here at home, I would encourage those Americans who want to support the urgent humanitarian efforts to go to whitehouse.gov where you can learn how to contribute. We must be prepared for difficult hours and days ahead as we learn about the scope of the tragedy. We will keep the victims and their families in our prayers. We will be resolute in our response, and I pledge to the people of Haiti that you will have a friend and partner in the ed States of America today and going forward.May God bless the people of Haiti and those working on their behalf.Thank you very much.201001/94671。

全球顶级CEO的演讲(7) 美国经典英文演讲100篇总统演讲布莱尔首相演讲美国总统布什演讲快报英语演讲视频200809/49963。

[Nextpage视频演讲]The President addresses the American people from the Oval Office for the first time on the ongoing Administration-wide response to the BP oil spill and America’s clean energy future.Download Video: mp4 (477MB) | mp3 (16MB) [Nextpage演讲文本]Remarks by the President to the Nation on the BP Oil SpillOval Office8:01 P.M. EDTTHE PRESIDENT: Good evening. As we speak, our nation faces a multitude of challenges. At home, our top priority is to recover and rebuild from a recession that has touched the lives of nearly every American. Abroad, our brave men and women in uniform are taking the fight to al Qaeda wherever it exists. And tonight, I’ve returned from a trip to the Gulf Coast to speak with you about the battle we’re waging against an oil spill that is assaulting our shores and our citizens.On April 20th, an explosion ripped through BP Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, about 40 miles off the coast of Louisiana. Eleven workers lost their lives. Seventeen others were injured. And soon, nearly a mile beneath the surface of the ocean, oil began spewing into the water.Because there has never been a leak this size at this depth, stopping it has tested the limits of human technology. That’s why just after the rig sank, I assembled a team of our nation’s best scientists and engineers to tackle this challenge -- a team led by Dr. Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and our nation’s Secretary of Energy. Scientists at our national labs and experts from academia and other oil companies have also provided ideas and advice.As a result of these efforts, we’ve directed BP to mobilize additional equipment and technology. And in the coming weeks and days, these efforts should capture up to 90 percent of the oil leaking out of the well. This is until the company finishes drilling a relief well later in the summer that’s expected to stop the leak completely. Aly, this oil spill is the worst environmental disaster America has ever faced. And unlike an earthquake or a hurricane, it’s not a single event that does its damage in a matter of minutes or days. The millions of gallons of oil that have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico are more like an epidemic, one that we will be fighting for months and even years. But make no mistake: We will fight this spill with everything we’ve got for as long as it takes. We will make BP pay for the damage their company has caused. And we will do whatever’s necessary to help the Gulf Coast and its people recover from this tragedy. Tonight I’d like to lay out for you what our battle plan is going forward: what we’re doing to clean up the oil, what we’re doing to help our neighbors in the Gulf, and what we’re doing to make sure that a catastrophe like this never happens again. First, the cleanup. From the very beginning of this crisis, the federal government has been in charge of the largest environmental cleanup effort in our nation’s history -- an effort led by Admiral Thad Allen, who has almost 40 years of experience responding to disasters. We now have nearly 30,000 personnel who are working across four states to contain and clean up the oil. Thousands of ships and other vessels are responding in the Gulf. And I’ve authorized the deployment of over 17,000 National Guard members along the coast. These servicemen and women are y to help stop the oil from coming ashore, they’re y to help clean the beaches, train response workers, or even help with processing claims -- and I urge the governors in the affected states to activate these troops as soon as possible. Because of our efforts, millions of gallons of oil have aly been removed from the water through burning, skimming and other collection methods. Over five and a half million feet of boom has been laid across the water to block and absorb the approaching oil. We’ve approved the construction of new barrier islands in Louisiana to try to stop the oil before it reaches the shore, and we’re working with Alabama, Mississippi and Florida to implement creative approaches to their unique coastlines. As the cleanup continues, we will offer whatever additional resources and assistance our coastal states may need. Now, a mobilization of this speed and magnitude will never be perfect, and new challenges will always arise. I saw and heard evidence of that during this trip. So if something isn’t working, we want to hear about it. If there are problems in the operation, we will fix them. But we have to recognize that despite our best efforts, oil has aly caused damage to our coastline and its wildlife. And sadly, no matter how effective our response is, there will be more oil and more damage before this siege is done. That’s why the second thing we’re focused on is the recovery and restoration of the Gulf Coast. You know, for generations, men and women who call this region home have made their living from the water. That living is now in jeopardy. I’ve talked to shrimpers and fishermen who don’t know how they’re going to support their families this year. I’ve seen empty docks and restaurants with fewer customers -– even in areas where the beaches are not yet affected. I’ve talked to owners of shops and hotels who wonder when the tourists might start coming back. The sadness and the anger they feel is not just about the money they’ve lost. It’s about a wrenching anxiety that their way of life may be lost. I refuse to let that happen. Tomorrow, I will meet with the chairman of BP and inform him that he is to set aside whatever resources are required to compensate the workers and business owners who have been harmed as a result of his company’s recklessness. And this fund will not be controlled by BP. In order to ensure that all legitimate claims are paid out in a fair and timely manner, the account must and will be administered by an independent third party. Beyond compensating the people of the Gulf in the short term, it’s also clear we need a long-term plan to restore the unique beauty and bounty of this region. The oil spill represents just the latest blow to a place that’s aly suffered multiple economic disasters and decades of environmental degradation that has led to disappearing wetlands and habitats. And the region still hasn’t recovered from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. That’s why we must make a commitment to the Gulf Coast that goes beyond responding to the crisis of the moment. I make that commitment tonight. Earlier, I asked Ray Mabus, the Secretary of the Navy, who is also a former governor of Mississippi and a son of the Gulf Coast, to develop a long-term Gulf Coast Restoration Plan as soon as possible. The plan will be designed by states, local communities, tribes, fishermen, businesses, conservationists and other Gulf residents. And BP will pay for the impact this spill has had on the region. The third part of our response plan is the steps we’re taking to ensure that a disaster like this does not happen again. A few months ago, I approved a proposal to consider new, limited offshore drilling under the assurance that it would be absolutely safe –- that the proper technology would be in place and the necessary precautions would be taken.That obviously was not the case in the Deepwater Horizon rig, and I want to know why. The American people deserve to know why. The families I met with last week who lost their loved ones in the explosion -- these families deserve to know why. And so I’ve established a National Commission to understand the causes of this disaster and offer recommendations on what additional safety and environmental standards we need to put in place. Aly, I’ve issued a six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling. I know this creates difficulty for the people who work on these rigs, but for the sake of their safety, and for the sake of the entire region, we need to know the facts before we allow deepwater drilling to continue. And while I urge the Commission to complete its work as quickly as possible, I expect them to do that work thoroughly and impartially. One place we’ve aly begun to take action is at the agency in charge of regulating drilling and issuing permits, known as the Minerals Management Service. Over the last decade, this agency has become emblematic of a failed philosophy that views all regulation with hostility -- a philosophy that says corporations should be allowed to play by their own rules and police themselves. At this agency, industry insiders were put in charge of industry oversight. Oil companies showered regulators with gifts and favors, and were essentially allowed to conduct their own safety inspections and write their own regulations. When Ken Salazar became my Secretary of the Interior, one of his very first acts was to clean up the worst of the corruption at this agency. But it’s now clear that the problem there ran much deeper, and the pace of reform was just too slow. And so Secretary Salazar and I are bringing in new leadership at the agency -- Michael Bromwich, who was a tough federal prosecutor and Inspector General. And his charge over the next few months is to build an organization that acts as the oil industry’s watchdog -- not its partner. So one of the lessons we’ve learned from this spill is that we need better regulations, better safety standards, and better enforcement when it comes to offshore drilling. But a larger lesson is that no matter how much we improve our regulation of the industry, drilling for oil these days entails greater risk. After all, oil is a finite resource. We consume more than 20 percent of the world’s oil, but have less than 2 percent of the world’s oil reserves. And that’s part of the reason oil companies are drilling a mile beneath the surface of the ocean -- because we’re running out of places to drill on land and in shallow water. For decades, we have known the days of cheap and easily accessible oil were numbered. For decades, we’ve talked and talked about the need to end America’s century-long addiction to fossil fuels. And for decades, we have failed to act with the sense of urgency that this challenge requires. Time and again, the path forward has been blocked -- not only by oil industry lobbyists, but also by a lack of political courage and candor. The consequences of our inaction are now in plain sight. Countries like China are investing in clean energy jobs and industries that should be right here in America. Each day, we send nearly billion of our wealth to foreign countries for their oil. And today, as we look to the Gulf, we see an entire way of life being threatened by a menacing cloud of black crude.We cannot consign our children to this future. The tragedy unfolding on our coast is the most painful and powerful reminder yet that the time to embrace a clean energy future is now. Now is the moment for this generation to embark on a national mission to unleash America’s innovation and seize control of our own destiny.This is not some distant vision for America. The transition away from fossil fuels is going to take some time, but over the last year and a half, we’ve aly taken unprecedented action to jumpstart the clean energy industry. As we speak, old factories are reopening to produce wind turbines, people are going back to work installing energy-efficient windows, and small businesses are making solar panels. Consumers are buying more efficient cars and trucks, and families are making their homes more energy-efficient. Scientists and researchers are discovering clean energy technologies that someday will lead to entire new industries. Each of us has a part to play in a new future that will benefit all of us. As we recover from this recession, the transition to clean energy has the potential to grow our economy and create millions of jobs -– but only if we accelerate that transition. Only if we seize the moment. And only if we rally together and act as one nation –- workers and entrepreneurs; scientists and citizens; the public and private sectors. When I was a candidate for this office, I laid out a set of principles that would move our country towards energy independence. Last year, the House of Representatives acted on these principles by passing a strong and comprehensive energy and climate bill –- a bill that finally makes clean energy the profitable kind of energy for America’s businesses. Now, there are costs associated with this transition. And there are some who believe that we can’t afford those costs right now. I say we can’t afford not to change how we produce and use energy -– because the long-term costs to our economy, our national security, and our environment are far greater. So I’m happy to look at other ideas and approaches from either party -– as long they seriously tackle our addiction to fossil fuels. Some have suggested raising efficiency standards in our buildings like we did in our cars and trucks. Some believe we should set standards to ensure that more of our electricity comes from wind and solar power. Others wonder why the energy industry only spends a fraction of what the high-tech industry does on research and development -– and want to rapidly boost our investments in such research and development. All of these approaches have merit, and deserve a fair hearing in the months ahead. But the one approach I will not accept is inaction. The one answer I will not settle for is the idea that this challenge is somehow too big and too difficult to meet. You know, the same thing was said about our ability to produce enough planes and tanks in World War II. The same thing was said about our ability to harness the science and technology to land a man safely on the surface of the moon. And yet, time and again, we have refused to settle for the paltry limits of conventional wisdom. Instead, what has defined us as a nation since our founding is the capacity to shape our destiny -– our determination to fight for the America we want for our children. Even if we’re unsure exactly what that looks like. Even if we don’t yet know precisely how we’re going to get there. We know we’ll get there. It’s a faith in the future that sustains us as a people. It is that same faith that sustains our neighbors in the Gulf right now. Each year, at the beginning of shrimping season, the region’s fishermen take part in a tradition that was brought to America long ago by fishing immigrants from Europe. It’s called “The Blessing of the Fleet,” and today it’s a celebration where clergy from different religions gather to say a prayer for the safety and success of the men and women who will soon head out to sea -– some for weeks at a time. The ceremony goes on in good times and in bad. It took place after Katrina, and it took place a few weeks ago –- at the beginning of the most difficult season these fishermen have ever faced. And still, they came and they prayed. For as a priest and former fisherman once said of the tradition, “The blessing is not that God has promised to remove all obstacles and dangers. The blessing is that He is with us always,” a blessing that’s granted “even in the midst of the storm.” The oil spill is not the last crisis America will face. This nation has known hard times before and we will surely know them again. What sees us through -– what has always seen us through –- is our strength, our resilience, and our unyielding faith that something better awaits us if we summon the courage to reach for it.Tonight, we pray for that courage. We pray for the people of the Gulf. And we pray that a hand may guide us through the storm towards a brighter day. Thank you, God bless you, and may God bless the ed States of America.END201006/106447。

Most of the Work Takes Place Before a Hurricane HitsREMARKS BY THE PRESIDENTAFTER MEETING AT FEMAON HURRICANE PREPAREDNESSFEMA HeadquartersWashington, D.C.3:17 P.M. EDTTHE PRESIDENT: Well, for all of you who just joined us, I've just received a briefing here at FEMA at the National Response Coordination Center for our preparations for this year's hurricane season, which begins on Monday. And I want to thank Secretary Napolitano, as well as John Brennan, my Homeland Security Advisor. And we've welcomed Craig Fugate, who has hit the ground running and is aly doing an outstanding job not just leading this briefing but leading this excellent agency.And I want to thank all the people here at FEMA who do such an excellent job for their diligence and their commitment for this task.We are all here together because we are determined to be as prepared as possible when the next catastrophic hurricane hits the ed States. And we want to make sure that cities and our people remain resilient enough to weather any storm.Our top priority is ensuring the public safety. That means appropriate sheltering in place, or, if necessary, getting as many people as possible out of harm’s way prior to landfall. But most of the work, as you would hear from these individual agencies, most of the work takes place before a hurricane hits. True preparedness means having federal and state and local governments all coordinating effectively, and as you just heard, one of the most important things we can do is make sure the families have prepared appropriately.We just saw some statistics coming out of Florida indicating that a huge percentage of people in hurricane areas simply don't make plans. They don't have a plan, they don't have a set of contingencies that will allow them to respond in an effective way. Those people who have the capacity to plan, they will thereby relieve some of the resources that the government has to provide and we can stay focused on those folks who are most vulnerable and have the most difficulty dealing with a storm.So I hope that message of personal responsibility sinks in. And, Craig, is there a Web site that we want to provide that would help people formulate a plan right now?ADMINISTRATOR FUGATE: Yes, sir, it's real simple -- y.gov.THE PRESIDENT: Ready.gov.ADMINISTRATOR FUGATE: It will help you get y for your disaster threats.THE PRESIDENT: Okay. That's the reason that all the representatives here met and have been meeting over the last several months, is because they want to be y. And states are going to have the primary responsibility in preparing for and responding to disasters -- but they're going to have the full resources of the federal government backing them up.And the last point I guess I would like to make is that when you go on y.gov, you'll see that -- I think the public will see that a lot of these plans are not complicated. They're pretty simple. It's a matter of having a basic emergency supply kit with items such as water, some non-perishable food, an all-weather radio, a flashlight, a first aid kit; making an emergency family plan; staying informed of developments in your area; and learning about your community’s emergency plans.So I have no greater responsibility than the safety of the American people. I want to thank all of the people here today who, in their various roles, do such a terrific job even in non-emergency situations, helping to keep the American people safe. But as we enter into hurricane season, I hope that everybody who's watching is going to be paying attention and take seriously their responsibilities as citizens so that the entire country is y.Thank you very much, everybody.END 3:22 P.M. EDT06/72328。

REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT AT INDEPENDENCE DAY CELEBRATION THE PRESIDENT: Welcome to the White House. (Applause.) And happy Fourth of July. Michelle and I are honored and proud to have you here on the Fourth. And we're humbled to be joined up here by heroes -- men and women who went beyond the call of duty in battle, some selflessly risking their lives again and again so that others might live. True to form, they -- like all of you -- say they were just doing their job. That's what makes you the best of us, and that's why we simply want to say thank you to each and every one of you for your extraordinary service to our country.We're joined in that sentiment by Vice President Joe Biden, who, as many of you know, is marking Independence Day with troops in Iraq; and Jill Biden, who's spending it with military families in Germany. I should say that there's also one girl in particular who's just thrilled that all of you are here -- and that is Malia Obama, because this happens to be her birthday, as well. (Applause.) When she was younger, I used to say that all these fireworks were for her. (Laughter.) I'm not sure she still buys that, but even if this backyard is a little bit unique, our gathering tonight is not so different from gatherings that are taking place all across the country, in parks and fields and backyards all across America. In small towns and big cities, folks are firing up grills, laughing with family and friends, and laying out a blanket in preparation for the big show. They're reliving the simple, unmistakable joys of being an American. But I suspect they're also taking some time to reflect on the unique nature of what it means to be an American; to give thanks for the extraordinary blessings that we enjoy; to celebrate and uphold the ideas and values that have invigorated and sustained this democracy and made it the lasting beacon for all of the world. Just imagine the extraordinary audacity it took, 233 years ago, for a group of patriots to cast off the title of "subject" for "citizen," and put ideas to paper that were as simple as they were revolutionary: that we are equal; that we are free; that we can pursue our full measure of happiness and make of our lives what we will. In retrospect, it seems inevitable. But I think it's fair to say that even the framers of that declaration -- especially the framers of that declaration -- would be astonished to see the results of their improbable experiment: a nation of commerce that led future revolutions in industry and information; a nation of discovery that blazed a trail west, cured disease, and put a man on the moon; a nation of progress that strives perpetually to perfect itself; and a nation of hope, that has again and again inspired people the world over to reach for the same freedoms we hold so dear.07/76753。

国际英文演讲高手 Chapter4-1暂无文本 200709/17885。

REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENTAT THE MEDAL OF FREEDOM CEREMONYTHE PRESIDENT: There are many honors and privileges bestowed on the occupant of this house, but few mean as much to me as the chance to award America's highest civilian medal to the recipients that are here today. This is a chance for me -- and for the ed States of America -- to say thank you to some of the finest citizens of this country, and of all countries.The men and women we honor today have led very different lives and pursued very different careers. They're pioneers in science and medicine. They're gifted artists and indomitable athletes. They have made their mark in the courtroom, in the community, and in Congress. And what unites them is a belief -- that most -- forgive me to those of you who are not Americans -- but what we consider to be that most American of beliefs -- that our lives are what we make of them; that no barriers of race, gender, or physical infirmity can restrain the human spirit; and that the truest test of a person's life is what we do for one another.The recipients of the Medal of Freedom did not set out to win this or any other award. They did not set out in pursuit of glory or fame or riches. Rather, they set out, guided by passion, committed to hard work, aided by persistence, often with few advantages but the gifts, grace, and good name God gave them.So, let them stand as an example here in the ed States -- and around the world -- of what we can achieve in our own lives. Let them stand as an example of the difference we can make in the lives of others. Let each of their stories stand as an example of a life well lived.One of the last things Suzy Komen did before she passed away was ask her sister Nancy to make her a promise. Nancy promised her she would prevent other families battling breast cancer from hurting the way theirs had. What began with 0 and a list of friends has become a global Race for the Cure, a campaign that has eased the pain and saved the lives of millions around the world. In the months after her sister's death, Nancy lay awake at night, thinking about the promise she had made and wondering whether one person could really make a difference. Nancy's life is the answer.While an intern at Miami's Jackson Memorial, Dr. Pedro José Greer came across a patient in a coma without a known name or address -- a homeless man, found by firefighters, suffering from tuberculosis. In the days that followed, the physician Little Havana knows as Dr. Joe searched for clues about the patient's life in the squalor under Miami's highways. Deciding that Miami's homeless deserved better, Dr. Greer founded Camillus Health Concern, a clinic that now offers care to over 4,000 poor and homeless patients. It's a life that might be distilled into a question Dr. Greer asks all of us: "If we don't fight injustice, who will?"Professor Stephen Hawking was a brilliant man and a mediocre student -- (laughter) -- when he lost his balance and tumbled down a flight of stairs. Diagnosed with a rare disease and told he had just a few years to live, he chose to live with new purpose. And happily, in the four decades since, he has become one of the world's leading scientists. His work in theoretical physics -- which I will not attempt to explain further here -- (laughter) -- has advanced our understanding of the universe. His popular books have advanced the cause of science itself. From his wheelchair, he's led us on a journey to the farthest and strangest reaches of the cosmos. In so doing, he has stirred our imagination and shown us the power of the human spirit here on Earth.Told he was too small to play college football, Jack Kemp became a pro quarterback. Cut by four teams, he led the Buffalo Bills to two championships. Football, he once said, gave him a good sense of perspective about politics: He'd "aly been booed, cheered, cut, sold, [and traded]." (Laughter.) Makes me feel better. (Laughter.) A conservative thinker, a Republican leader, and a defender of civil rights, he was that rare patriot who put country over party, never forgetting what he learned on the gridiron -- that it takes each of us doing our part, and all of us working together, to achieve a common goal. It's a life from which we can all draw lessons, Democrat and Republican alike.After purchasing an racket with money earned from chores, 11-year-old Billie Jean declared a goal to be the number one tennis player in the world. Yet, what we honor are not simply her 12 Grand Slam titles, 101 doubles titles, and 67 singles titles -- pretty good, Billie Jean -- (laughter) -- we honor what she calls "all the off-the-court stuff" -- what she did to broaden the reach of the game, to change how women athletes and women everywhere view themselves, and to give everyone -- regardless of gender or sexual orientation -- including my two daughters -- a chance to compete both on the court and in life. As Billie Jean once said, we should "never, ever underestimate the human spirit." Nor should we underestimate Billie Jean King's spirit.Born and raised in Jim Crow Alabama, preaching in his blood, the Reverend Joseph Lowery is a giant of the Moses generation of civil rights leaders. It was just King, Lowery, and a few others, huddled in Montgomery, who laid the groundwork for the bus boycott and the movement that was to follow. A founder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Lowery was later asked to serve as President. He agreed to serve for one year, but wound up serving, as he puts it, for 20 one-year terms. (Laughter.) Throughout his life, some have called him crazy. But one of my favorite sermons that I heard Dr. Lowery once deliver, he said: There's good crazy and there's bad crazy -- (laughter) -- and sometimes you need a little bit of that good crazy to make the world a better place.Born just a generation past the Battle of the Little Big Horn, a grandson of a scout for General Custer himself, Dr. Joseph Medicine Crow was the first member of his tribe to attend college and earn a Master's. Before completing his PhD, he left to serve in World War II. Wearing war paint beneath his uniform, and a sacred feather beneath his helmet, Joseph Medicine Crow completed the four battlefield deeds that made him the last Crow war chief. Historian, educator, and patriot -- a good man, a bacheitche in Crow -- Dr. Medicine Crow's life reflects not only the warrior spirit of the Crow people, but America's highest ideals.His name was Harvey Milk, and he was here to recruit us -- all of us -- to join a movement and change a nation. For much of his early life, he had silenced himself. In the prime of his life, he was silenced by the act of another. But in the brief time in which he spoke -- and ran and led -- his voice stirred the aspirations of millions of people. He would become, after several attempts, one of the first openly gay Americans elected to public office. And his message of hope -- hope unashamed, hope unafraid -- could not ever be silenced. It was Harvey who said it best: "You gotta give 'em hope."When a young Sandra Day graduated from Stanford Law School near the top of her class -- in two years instead of the usual three -- she was offered just one job in the private sector. Her prospective employer asked her how well she typed and told her there might be work for her as a legal secretary. Now, I cannot know how she would have fared as a legal secretary -- (laughter) -- but she made a mighty fine justice of the ed States Supreme Court. (Laughter and applause.) A judge and Arizona legislator, cancer survivor, child of the Texas plains, Sandra Day O'Connor is like the pilgrim in the poem she sometime es who has forged a new trail and built a bridge behind her for all young women to follow.It's been said that Sidney Poitier does not make movies, he makes milestones -- milestones of artistic excellence; milestones of America's progress. On screen and behind the camera, in films such as The Defiant Ones, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, Uptown Saturday Night, Lilies of the Field -- for which he became the first African American to win an Academy Award for Best Actor -- Poitier not only entertained, but enlightened, shifting attitudes, broadening hearts, revealing the power of the silver screen to bring us closer together. The child of Bahamian tomato farmers, Poitier once called his driving purpose to make himself a better person. He did -- and he made us all a little bit better along the way.Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero -- (applause) -- knows the adversity that comes with a difficult name. (Laughter.) I can relate. (Laughter.) Known to the world by the name that has lit up Broadway marquees, Chita Rivera's career had an improbable start. Accompanying a nervous classmate on an audition, she decided to audition herself, and impressed the choreographer, Jerome Robbins, who would make her famous as Anita in West Side Story. Sassy, electric -- that rare performer who can sing, dance, and act -- Chita Rivera revealed that still rarer ability to overcome when she recovered from a car accident that shattered her leg. She ended up retaking the stage, won a Tony for Kiss of the Spider Woman. And like her unforgettable Anita, Chita Rivera has shown that life can indeed be bright in America.The only girl in a family of four brothers, Mary Robinson learned early on what it takes to make sure all voices are heard. As a crusader for women and those without a voice in Ireland, Mary Robinson was the first woman elected President of Ireland, before being appointed U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights. When she traveled abroad as President, she would place a light in her window that would draw people of Irish descent to pass by below. Today, as an advocate for the hungry and the hunted, the forgotten and the ignored, Mary Robinson has not only shone a light on human suffering, but illuminated a better future for our world.After graduating from the University of Chicago School of Medicine in 1948, Janet Rowley got married, and gave birth to four sons, making medicine a hobby and making family her priority. It was not until she was almost 40 that she took up serious medical research, and not until almost a decade later that she discovered, hunched over her dining room table, examining small photos of chromosomes, that leukemia cells are notable for changes in their genetics -- a discovery that showed cancer is genetic, and transformed how we fight the disease. All of us have been touched in some way by cancer, including my family -- and so we can all be thankful that what began as a hobby became a life's work for Janet.The glint in the eye and the lilt in the voice are familiar to us all. But the signature quality of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, says Nelson Mandela, is a iness to take unpopular stands without fear. Perhaps that explains what led the Arch, as he's known, to preach amid tear gas and police dogs, rallying a people against apartheid. And later, when a free South Africa needed a heart big enough to forgive its sins, Archbishop Desmond Tutu was called to serve once more -- as chairman of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Tribune of the downtrodden, voice of the oppressed, cantor of our conscience, Desmond Tutu possesses that sense of generosity, that spirit of unity, that essence of humanity that South Africans know simply as Ubuntu.Thirty-five years ago, a young economics professor at a university in Bangladesh was struck by the disconnect between the theories he was teaching in class and the reality of the famine outside. So, determined to help, Mohammed Yunus left the classroom for a village, and discovered that just would free dozens of artisans, vendors, and rickshaw pullers from debt. Offering himself as a guarantor, he withdrew a loan, paid off their debts, and founded Grameen Bank -- a bank that has disbursed over billion, lifting millions of people from poverty with microloans. Mohammed Yunus was just trying to help a village, but he somehow managed to change the world.There's a story Ted Kennedy sometimes tells. It's about a boy who sees an old man tossing starfish stranded by a receding tide back into the sea. "There are so many," asks the boy, "what difference can your efforts possibly make?" The old man studies the starfish in his hand and tosses it to safety, saying: "It makes a difference to that one." For nearly half a century, Ted Kennedy has been walking that beach, making a difference for that soldier fighting for freedom, that refugee looking for a way home, that senior searching for dignity, that worker striving for opportunity, that student aspiring to college, that family reaching for the American Dream. The life of Senator Edward M. Kennedy has made a difference for us all.These are the recipients of the Medal of Freedom. At a moment when cynicism and doubt too often prevail, when our obligations to one another are too often forgotten, when the road ahead can seem too long or hard to t, these extraordinary men and women -- these agents of change -- remind us that excellence is not beyond our abilities, that hope lies around the corner, and that justice can still be won in the forgotten corners of this world. They remind us that we each have it within our powers to fulfill dreams, to advance the dreams of others, and to remake the world for our children.And it is now my distinct and extraordinary honor to ask each of them to come forward to receive their award, as a military aide s their citation. (Applause.) 08/81138。