Remarks of Sen. John F. Kennedy at Glenwood Park, West Virginia, April 26, 1960
This campaign speech from April 1960 asked for “decency and dignity” for the people of West Virginia. Although it took Kennedy years to apply this ideal to African-Americans through the civil rights movement, the visit signaled increased compassion for those underserved by the government. During his two weeks in the state Kennedy “gained a fuller understanding of the unemployed workers, the pensioners, and the relief recipients demoralized by their poverty but eager for a chance to improve their lives” (Dallek 254). Do you think this speech was mostly campaign jargon, or were there indications in Kennedy’s language that he was moved by his visit?