On June 11, 1963, President John Kennedy gave a report to the American people explaining the order he had given to the Alabama National Guard to supervise the integration of the University of Alabama and admit two "qualified Alabama residents who happened to have been born Negro." Kennedy addressed the issue of inequality in America, describing the nation's moral choice on the question of whether all Americans are to be afforded equal rights and equal opportunities. Later that month, Kennedy sent a special message to Congress, calling for extensive civil rights legislation, but Congress did not act until 1964, after the president's death. [more…]
Mario Cuomo, then governor of New York, delivered his most memorable speech on July 16, 1984, at the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco, California. In this portion of that keynote address, Cuomo contrasts then- President Ronald Reagan's image of the United States as a "shining city on a hill" with another America experienced by many of her citizens. He suggests that the real story was "a tale of two cities," and stressed the gap between the haves and have-nots in 1980s America. [more…]
On December 7, 1941, Japanese forces attacked the U.S. Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, killing 2,400 Americans. The next day, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt gave this famous speech informing Americans that, to his mind, a state of war had existed since the moment of the attack. Although the president, and America, had taken an isolationist stance prior to the attack, American attitudes were dramatically changed by the attack and Roosevelt's speech. By contrasting an early draft of the message with the text of the speech as Roosevelt delivered it, we can gain insight to the ways seemingly minor word changes can dramatically alter the rhetorical power of a message. [more…]
No one person was responsible for the space program, but Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong's words, from the surface of the moon, spoke of the culmination of many scientific and technological achievements. [more…]
Host Jim Liegl and Primary Challenge founder Lenny Roberto talk about the week in Erie County and New York State politics. Be sure to listen every week as Primary Challenge candidates answer your questions. Primary Challenge Radio can be heard every Monday from 8:00-9:00 p.m. on WBNY-FM 91.3, Buffalo State's student-run radio station.