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and their hearts and their souls, then it would be made to come from outside-through compulsion, through force, through dictatorship.
Can you see the ship freighted with the destinies of men, swaying from one side, where the individual was called supreme; to the other, where the state was crowned with the laurels of supremacy? There is nothing surprising in that twist, for where there was no guardianship over the mind and heart and soul of liberty, the principle that the strong individual is permitted to devour the weak one will naturally lead to the principle that the strong state may devour the weak one. So it was that liberty began to take on a meaning which we emphatically refused to accept or to recognize— the liberty which Frederick Engels called the liberty of necessity. We have heard it shouted from high balconies, from crowded market places-“man is free, when he acts according to determined laws"; man is free, so long as he obeys the will of the dictator, and the dictator is always identified with the common good. Under this concept of society, then, we will have freedom of speech and freedom of the press-if they are used to support the dictator; men will have freedom to vote if their ballot is approved by the dictator; men will have freedom to think, to will, to desire, if they think and will and desire what the dictator thinks and wills and desires; and thus the total man is absorbed by the state. Yes, the total man, body and soul, and for that reason we have called this not liberty of necessity, but totalitarianism.
From our vantage point at that hallowed shrine of liberty, looking out over the world today we still see nations in danger of being dashed against Scylla or ground to complete impotence by Charybdis. Our colleagues, whose memory we revere today, have handed into our keeping that torch of liberation for the homeless, the tempest-tossed, the wretched refuse of the greed, the selfishness, the tyranny of men who, thank God, have gone down in defeat.
Yes, we have gained a victory of arms, but in gaining that victory have we not marched to the precipice of defeat when we face the danger of losing that for which we fought to win. The danger is not a new one.
It is as old as America itself.
Every individual American, every individual who has served in this body has been faced with the same danger and has met the challenge unhesitatingly and unflinchingly.
Those men whose names you heard called here todaySCRUGHAM of Nevada, JOHNSON of California, THOMAS of Idaho, MOTT of Oregon; ERVIN of North Carolina, SNYDER Of Pennsylvania, BURGIN of North Carolina-those men who now fail to answer "Present" when their names are called because they are no longer among the living, faced this challenge every day of their lives in the service of the people they represented and served.
Day after day they stood in this Chamber and the Chamber at the other end of this Capitol and bowed their heads in silent prayer for the strength to keep the light burning and the door open for the peoples of a world seeking the right to live in a country which guaranteed the dignity of the individual and yet preserved the soul of the Nation itself by perpetuating that right with the force of arms if necessary.
Day after day they stood with steadfast determination and unswerving courage in the cause of a people who to themselves could say: "We are free to think as we please, we are free to speak as we please, we are free to write as we please, we are free to worship as we please—our forefathers could not. We can."
Day after day when our men of arms stood on the battle fronts of the world and our men of brawn stood on the production lines in this "the arsenal of democracy"-these men of fortitude and purpose, these colleagues of ours stood at their posts of duty on the home front of eternal vigilance keeping the light burning and the door open, until felled by the hand of death.
With humility, we acknowledge our unworthiness to be their successors, just as they, in turn, felt their own unworthiness to succeed the long line of noble men stretching back to the first fathers of our glorious Republic.
As we pause to do honor to their memory we suddenly find ourselves listening to other voices, the voices of our American boys, descendants of tired, poor, huddled masses, who entered through the golden door and found their pathway brightened by the torch of liberty. Boys who made the supreme sacrifice of their lives in order to protect and immortalize the soul of America.
The poppies cannot bloom on Iwo-land in row on row, as told of Flanders' field;
Black sands of hell and blood-soaked sacred strand
Where liberty-or-death's blood bathed proud shields,
Brave devil-dogs from halls of Montezuma
Who tamed the pirates well at Tripoli
Now sanctify their blood on Iwo Jima
And plant their gallant hearts on Suribachi.
Heroes of Roi, Namur, Guam, Saipan,
Who bled the shock of awesome Peleliu,
Engaged Nippon to their last fighting man.
On tragic Tarawa; they died for you
On hell's black sands. Where poppies cannot grow
-George William Cooper.
They died for you and for you more than any individuals in our beloved America; because you and I are keepers of the light-you and I are guardians of the torch, you and I are to hand down to future generations that soul of America which is worth fighting for, which is worth dying for, and God grant that we hand it down as clean, as untarnished, and as strong as our departed colleagues handed it to us. American liberty is based on the recognition that freedom is not merely a constitutional right, nor merely a natural right, nor simply a human right, nor a social right. It is, above all things else, a spiritual right. Let dictators talk with benevolent suggestions of giving freedom; our answer was heard in the roar of
cannons, the barking of guns, the whirring of planes that dropped protesting bombs. And those bombs, as they hurled down from the skies, screamed back our answer "All men are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights." With that endowment of God, and with the faculty of free will, there came to every man the gift of conscience which tells him not what he would like selfishly to do, not what he must do, but what, as an intelligent being, and a social unit, he ought to do.
America, recognizing the brotherhood of man, appreciates the nature of man as a self-directing individual who, recognizing his responsibilities before God, before his fellow men, and before his country, can be trusted to make the right and proper choice-a choice that will redound to the good of all. That idealism approaches reality when we scan the records of our young men in our camps, on our ships, in our planes, on our battlefields, in our "God's acres" where stand the crosses row on row. That ideal found realization in the services rendered by our young women as Wacs and Waves and Spars, as cadet nurses, as Red Cross nurses, as workers in our defense plants. That ideal found realization on the home front when even necessities were sacrificed so that still another bond might make victory more secure and more lasting. Oh, yes, my colleagues, "there are such things," and thank God, that at least in this part of the universe, there are such things. And if we feel heavy with a sense of our responsibility in the task set before us in the most critical days of our Nation and of the world, let us rededicate ourselves at that hallowed shrine of liberty and, putting our hands into the hand of God, go forth with courage, with determination, with faith in a future that must bring lasting peace for men and for us in our own time, eternal rest and everlasting reward. It took the hell of war to make men realize that there are no atheists in fox holes.
It will take the hell of the struggle for peace to make civilization realize that there can be no atheism in government if
we who have won an earthly victory are to win an eternal triumph.
No nation can live without acknowledgment of a Supreme Being.
Governments founded on atheism are but meteors flashing temporarily across the skies of the international firmament. Their light blazes brilliantly and illuminates the world momentarily, only to fade out on the distant horizon, forgotten in the ages.
Governments founded on a belief in God and dependence on a Supreme Being are perpetual lights, burning eternally, held aloft as beacons to the downtrodden peoples who seek not to conquer the world but to save their own immortal souls.
As long as America keeps its immortal soul will freedom and independence live.
When America loses its immortal soul freedom and independence die.
America has always recognized the existence of God. Yes; the Jehovah of the Jews, as well as the Christ of the Protestants and the Catholics-the God of Jew and Christian, the Supreme Being of all mankind. There is no atheism in the concept of government which inspired the organization of the United States of America. There can be no atheism in a government whose Declaration of Independence begins by admitting the goodness of God and who proudly proclaims to the world, "In God we trust.”
No, my colleagues, there can be no compromise between a government of atheism and a government of God.
There can be no deviation from the course set by those who have gone before us. If we are to keep faith with those who have died we must avoid both Scylla and Charybdis. We must face the danger and meet the challenge with the same fortitude and determination with which they met it while they lived and served here.