47 John F. Kennedy Quotes (President JFK)

Welcome to our collection of  47 JFK Quotes! (including the video)

Top JFK Quotes

Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction. John F. Kennedy

For time and the world do not stand still. Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future. John F. Kennedy  (JFK Quotes)
Too often we... subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.
Too often we… subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought. John F. Kennedy
If we cannot end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.JFK Quotes
If we cannot end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.  For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal. John F. Kennedy
Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.
Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one’s own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others. John F. Kennedy
The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were.
The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were. John F. Kennedy
If freedom is to survive and prosper, it will require the sacrifice, the effort, and the thoughtful attention of every citizen.
If freedom is to survive and prosper, it will require the sacrifice, the effort, and the thoughtful attention of every citizen.  John F. Kennedy 

Inspirational John F. Kennedy Quotes

There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long-range risks of comfortable inaction
There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long-range risks of comfortable inaction. John F. Kennedy
 Life is never easy.  There is work to be done and obligations to be met.  Obligations to truth, to justice, and to liberty.John F. Kennedy Quotes 
 Life is never easy.  There is work to be done and obligations to be met.  Obligations to truth, to justice, and to liberty.  John F. Kennedy
When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity.
When written in Chinese, the word ‘crisis’ is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity. John F. Kennedy        (JFK Quotes)
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest form of appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.JFK Quotes
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest form of appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.  John F. Kennedy

Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other. John F. Kennedy
Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.John F. Kennedy Quotes
Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try.  John F. Kennedy
The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining.
The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining. John F. Kennedy
So let us begin anew--remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof.
So let us begin anew–remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof.  Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate.  John F. Kennedy 
Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.
Things do not happen. Things are made to happen. John F. Kennedy
Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.
Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.  John F. Kennedy
Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly. John F. Kennedy Quotes
Only those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly.  John F. Kennedy
If not us, who?  If not now, when?
If not us, who?  If not now, when? John F. Kennedy

More JFK Quotes

The greater our knowledge increases the more our ignorance unfolds. John F. Kennedy
I have pledged myself and my colleagues in the cabinet to a continuous encouragement of initiative, responsibility and energy in serving the public interest. Let every public servant know, whether his post is high or low, that a man's rank and reputation in this Administration will be determined by the size of the job he does, and not by the size of his staff, his office or his budget. Let it be clear that this Administration recognizes the value of dissent and daring -- that we greet healthy controversy as the hallmark of healthy change. Let the public service be a proud and lively career. And let every man and woman who works in any area of our national government, in any branch, at any level, be able to say with pride and with honor in future years: 'I served the United States Government in that hour of our nation's need.John F. Kennedy Quotes'
I have pledged myself and my colleagues in the cabinet to a continuous encouragement of initiative, responsibility and energy in serving the public interest. Let every public servant know, whether his post is high or low, that a man’s rank and reputation in this Administration will be determined by the size of the job he does, and not by the size of his staff, his office or his budget. Let it be clear that this Administration recognizes the value of dissent and daring — that we greet healthy controversy as the hallmark of healthy change. Let the public service be a proud and lively career. And let every man and woman who works in any area of our national government, in any branch, at any level, be able to say with pride and with honor in future years: ‘I served the United States Government in that hour of our nation’s need.’  John F.  Kennedy
I think the American people expect more from us (politicians) than cries of indignation and attack. The times are too grave, the challenge too urgent, and the stakes too high—to permit the customary passions of political debate. We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us through that darkness to a safe and sane future.
I think the American people expect more from us (politicians) than cries of indignation and attack. The times are too grave, the challenge too urgent, and the stakes too high—to permit the customary passions of political debate. We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us through that darkness to a safe and sane future.  John F. Kennedy
A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people. JFK Quotes
A nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people. John F. Kennedy
Rising tide lifts all boats.
Rising tide lifts all boats.  John F. Kennedy (JFK Quotes)
Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.John F. Kennedy Quotes
Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity. John F. Kennedy
Our deep spiritual confidence that this nation will survive the perils of today - which may well be with us for decades to come - compels us to invest in our nation's future, to consider and meet our obligations to our children and the numberless generations that will follow. JFK Quotes
Our deep spiritual confidence that this nation will survive the perils of today – which may well be with us for decades to come – compels us to invest in our nation’s future, to consider and meet our obligations to our children and the numberless generations that will follow.  John F. Kennedy
Mankind must put an end to war before war puts an end to mankind.John F. Kennedy Quotes
Mankind must put an end to war before war puts an end to mankind. John F. Kennedy
The courage of life is often a less dramatic spectacle than the courage of a final moment; but it is no less a magnificent mixture of triumph and tragedy.
The courage of life is often a less dramatic spectacle than the courage of a final moment; but it is no less a magnificent mixture of triumph and tragedy. John F. Kennedy
The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic.John F. Kennedy Quotes
The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. John F. Kennedy
Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. John F. Kennedy Quotes
Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth.  John F. Kennedy
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.  John F. Kennedy (JFK Quotes)
Do not pray for easy lives.  Pray to be stronger people.
Do not pray for easy lives.  Pray to be stronger people.  John F. Kennedy
Our problems are man-made, therefore, they may be solved by man.  And man can be as big as he wants.  No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings.John F. Kennedy Quotes
Our problems are man-made, therefore, they may be solved by man.  And man can be as big as he wants.  No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings.  John F. Kennedy
Let us not emphasize all on which we differ, but all we have in common.  Let us consider not what we fear separately, but what we share together.John F. Kennedy Quotes
Let us not emphasize all on which we differ, but all we have in common.  Let us consider not what we fear separately, but what we share together.  John F. Kennedy
Once you say you're going to settle for second, that's what happens to you in life.

Once you say you’re going to settle for second, that’s what happens to you in life.  John F. Kennedy

The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all.
The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all.  John F. Kennedy
Peace is a daily, a weekly, a monthly process, gradually changing opinions, slowly eroding old barriers, quietly building new structures.
Peace is a daily, a weekly, a monthly process, gradually changing opinions, slowly eroding old barriers, quietly building new structures.  John F. Kennedy
A man does what he must--in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures.  And that is the basis of all human morality.John F. Kennedy Quotes 
A man does what he must–in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures.  And that is the basis of all human morality.  John F. Kennedy
World peace, like community peace, does not require that each man love his neighbor — it requires only that they live together with mutual tolerance, submitting their disputes to a just and peaceful settlement.
World peace, like community peace, does not require that each man love his neighbor — it requires only that they live together with mutual tolerance, submitting their disputes to a just and peaceful settlement. John F. Kennedy (JFK Quotes)

JFK: Short Biography

American politician John Fitzgerald Kennedy, also known by his initials JFK or by the nickname Jack, was born on May 29, 1917, and died on November 22, 1963. He was the 35th president of the United States, taking office in 1961.

The youngest man to be elected to the position, John F. Kennedy served as the 35th President of the United States (1961–1963). JFK was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963, barely having completed his first thousand days in office, making him the youngest President to pass away.

Kennedy, who was raised in the well-known Kennedy family in Brookline, Massachusetts, graduated from Harvard in 1940 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy Reserve the following year.

He created his well-known thesis, “Why England Slept,” during his senior year of college, and then turned it into a book that was published and sold. In 1940, he received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard with a concentration in government.

In 1946, John F. Kennedy decided to run for Congress and won the election in November of that same year. He remained a member of Congress for a total of six years. In 1952, he ran for a seat in the Senate and was successful. In 1956, while he was serving in the Senate, Kennedy released his book, Profile in Courage, which was later awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Biography the year after it was published.

On January 20, 1961, John F. Kennedy took the oath of office as President of the United States.

Kennedy said, “We stand tonight on the verge of a New Frontier,” in his acceptance address. After that, his presidential plans came to be known as the “New Frontier.

Another expression that captured the candidate’s evolving identity was “the Kennedy style.” It was glitzy and elitist, a combination of his father’s wealth, John Kennedy’s charisma and easy wit, Jacqueline Kennedy’s beauty and fashion sense (the suits and pillbox hats she wore became extremely popular), and the charm of their kids and relatives, and the intelligence of the Harvard advisers who were all around him; they were described as the “best and brightest” by author David Halberstam.

While he was in office, During his presidency, he dealt with a number of international crises, particularly in Berlin and Cuba, but he was still able to obtain successes like the Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty and the Alliance for Progress.  He was also able to significantly improve the state of the American economy and launch the Peace Corps, an initiative that provides opportunities for citizens of the United States to volunteer in nations that are economically disadvantaged.

Under his administration, there was a resurgence of optimism for both global peace and American equal rights.

Must Read

Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy

Further Reading

 

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