Sunday, August 15, 2010

Eulogy For Bob Hope

Eulogy For Bob Hope

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On the desk of the Oval Office, President Truman kept under glass the one-word telegram Bob sent him following his dramatic upset of Tom Dewey. It read: "unpack."

When another President - Abraham Lincoln - died in the house across the street from Ford's Theater, his Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, standing at Lincoln's side, said "Now he belongs to the ages."

The same is equally true of Bob Hope.

He is not America's - he is the world's

He belongs not to our age, but to all ages.

And yet, even though he belongs to all time and to all peoples, he is our own, for he was quintessentially American.

— U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein Aug. 27, 2003
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Senator Edward Kennedy - Eulogies from the White House

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Senator Edward Kennedy - Eulogies from the White House

The funeral eulogy of Senator Edward Kennedy was delivered on August 29th, 2009, at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica in Roxbury, Massachusetts, by President Barack Obama. Edward Kennedy (often called Ted) died after a long battle with a malignant brain tumor. His death was seen as the end of the political era that was marked by the Kennedy vision for the Democratic Party and for the future of America.

Senator Kennedy served in his position for forty seven years, and at the funeral there were many people who attended to say farewell to the man. Among these were former presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and George Bush. The marked presence of all those who came to pay their respects attested to his diligence and service as a member of the Senate.

Before the service Vice-President Joe Biden gave a speech memorializing his long time friend. In it the emotional Biden stated that Ted Kennedy was “never defeatist, he never was petty – never was petty. He was never small. And in the process of his doing, he made everybody he worked with bigger, both his adversaries as well as his allies.”

During the eulogy, President Obama commented on Senator Kennedy’s work in the Senate when he said that the world would remember “Edward as the heir to a weighty legacy; a champion for those who had none; the soul of the Democratic Party; and the lion of the United States Senate – a man whose name graces nearly one thousand laws, and who penned more than three hundred laws himself.”

The Kennedy family tragedies were also highlighted when President Obama spoke in the eulogy about Edward’s good spirit and humor and how “That spirit of resilience and good humor would see Teddy through more pain and tragedy than most of us will ever know. He lost two siblings by the age of sixteen. He saw two more taken violently from a country that loved them. He said goodbye to his beloved sister, Eunice, in the final days of his life. He narrowly survived a plane crash, watched two children struggle with cancer, buried three nephews, and experienced personal failings and setbacks on the most public way possible.”

“It is a string of events that would have broken a lesser man. And it would have been easy for Ted to let himself become bitter and hardened; to surrender to self-pity and regret; to retreat from public life and live out his years in peaceful quiet. No one would have blamed him for that. But that was not Ted Kennedy.”

President Obama went on to say that Ted Kennedy was the type of man who helped to be the father figure for both John and Bobby Kennedy’s children after their deaths. This included doing everything from camping and sailing to walking Caroline Kennedy down the aisle when she was married. He summed this up by saying that “not only did the Kennedy family make it because of Ted’s love – he made it because of theirs.”

President Obama closed the eulogy by saying that “Ted Kennedy has gone home now, guided by his faith and by the light of those that he has loved and lost. At last he is with them once more, leaving those of us who grieve his passing with the memories he gave, the good that he did, the dream he kept alive, and a single, enduring image – the image of a man on a boat; white mane tousled, smiling broadly as he sails into the wind, ready for whatever storms may come, carrying on toward some new and wondrous place just beyond the horizon.”
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Stanley Kubrick's Eulogy by Edward Champion

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Stanley Kubrick's Eulogy by Edward Champion

"Uncompromising. Meticulous. Control freak. Reclusive. These were all words that were attached to Stanley Kubrick throughout his life. But they were also words that described a man who changed the rules of filmmaking. Kubrick merged the artistic film with the commercial, melding his stark independent vision with the coffers of Hollywood in a way that no other filmmaking genius -- not even Welles -- has managed to accomplish and may never succeed at doing again.

The death of Kubrick came as a shock to me. His legacy -- the twelve films that he created (including the forthcoming Eyes Wide Shut) -- impacted me personally and made me see film in a completely different way. In 1987, I saw my first Kubrick film, Full Metal Jacket, and discovered that film was more than just a medium that entertained. As I became engrossed with the moral disintegration of Private Gomer Pyle, as I watched raw recruits turn into seasoned veterans without remorse or morality, I realized that film had the ability to transcend mere storytelling and become an unforgettable visceral and visual experience.

I soon found myself renting every Kubrick film I could get my hands on, and became captivated with every frame, every character, and every painstakingly crafted allegorical touch that Kubrick embellished his films with. The giddy lunacy of Dr. Strangelove, the evolutionary epic of 2001: A Space Odyssey, and the moral philosophizing of A Clockwork Orange. I was amazed that the man could move seamlessly from one genre to another.

I watched these films over and over. Who was the man that created these images?

I began to read books. I collected an arsenal of magazine articles and clippings and learned that he had moved to England to maintain control of his films after he had become disappointed with the way Hollywood had attempted to wrestle control of Spartacus away from him. Through Kubrick, I learned that directing a film was more than just an artistic challenge. It was, above all, a relentless battle with the people who gave you the money.

I soon found myself experimenting with a video camera, hoping to recapture the visual poignancy of 2001's bone being tossed up into the air and becoming a spaceship, trying to reproduce the visual beauty of Barry Lyndon's candlelit imagery. And I soon moved on to Super 8 and 16mm formats, all the while keeping a mental checklist of all the true Kubrickean moments that I remembered.

There were other filmmakers that inspired me, who showed me how to work with the film form in the way in which they executed a scene or accomplished a shot. But it was Kubrick that showed me how the film worked as a whole.

To be fair, Kubrick was frequently tough on his actors. In A Clockwork Orange, he kept Malcolm McDowell's eyes open to that horrible metal device for nearly twelve hours straight. He shot a relentless number of takes for nearly every shot, 47 takes for a simple shot of Scatman Crothers crossing the street in The Shining. He took years upon years to create a film just to get it right. But his talent was so enormous, so all-encompassing, so vast, so true to the film form, that somehow all the horror stories seemed justified.

With Kubrick now gone, I wonder if film will ever be the same. He was a Dostoevsky, a Melville and a Tolstoy all rolled up in one. He was an uncompromising giant unafraid to tackle controversial issues and explore the human condition through his unique vision.
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Mahatma-Gandhi's-eulogy-by-Jawaharlal Nehru

Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Funeral Eulogy by Robert F. Kennedy

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Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Funeral Eulogy by Robert F. Kennedy

"For those of you who are black and are tempted to be filled with hatred ... against all white people, I can only say that I feel in my own heart the same kind of feeling. I had a member of my family killed....

Martin Luther King, the American civil rights leader and winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace, was born in Montgomery, Alabama. He rose to prominence in the civil rights movement of the 1950s, led the famous March on Washington in 1963, and the March from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in 1965. A brilliant orator and writer, whose insistence upon nonviolence in the Gandhian tradition accounted for the success of the movement, Dr. King was assassinated on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee, by a white man.

On the day King was assassinated, Sen. Robert Kennedy was campaigning for the presidency in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was on his way to a campaign rally in a black section of the city when he heard that King had been killed. His aides strongly urged him not to go to the rally, that he would be endangering his life. But Kennedy insisted, and he stood upon the back of a flatbed truck and delivered the following extemporaneous eulogy. Less than two months later, Kennedy was assassinated in Los Angeles.

I have bad news for you, for all our fellow citizens, and people who love peace all over the world, and that is that Martin Luther King was shot and killed tonight.

Martin Luther King dedicated his life to love and to justice for his fellow human beings, and he died because of that effort.

In this difficult day, in this difficult time for the United States, it is perhaps well to ask what kind of a nation we are and what direction we want to move in. For those of you who are black - considering the evidence there evidently is that there were white people who were responsible - you can be filled with bitterness, with hatred, and desire for revenge. We can move in that direction as a country, in great polarization - black people amongst black, white people amongst white, filled with hatred toward one another.

Or we can make an effort, as Martin Luther King did, to understand and to comprehend, and to replace that violence, that stain of bloodshed that has spread across our land, with an effort to understand that compassion and love.

For those of you who are black and are tempted to be filled with hatred and distrust at the injustice of such an act, against all white people, I can only say that I feel in my own heart the same kind of feeling. I had a member of my family killed, but he was killed by a white man. But we have to make an effort in the United States, we have to make an effort to understand, to go beyond these rather difficult times.

My favorite poet was Aeschylus. He wrote: "In our sleep pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God."

What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence or lawlessness, but love and wisdom and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of injustice towards those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or they be black...

We've had difficult times in the past. We will have difficult times in the future. It is not the end of violence; it is not the end of lawlessness; it is not the end of disorder.

But the vast majority of white people and the vast majority of black people in this country want to live together, want to improve the quality of our life, and want justice for all human beings who abide in our land. Let us dedicate ourselves to what the Greeks wrote so many years ago: to tame the savageness of man and to make gentle the life of this world.
Let us dedicate ourselves to that, and say a prayer for our country and for our people.
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Mahatma-Gandhi's-eulogy-by-Jawaharlal Nehru

Mahatma Gandhi's Eulogy by Jawaharlal Nehru

Mahatma Gandhi's Eulogy by Jawaharlal Nehru

"If, as I believe, his spirit looks upon us and sees us, nothing would displease his soul so much as to see that we have indulged in any small behaviour or any violence.

Mahatma means "great soul," an honorific Gandhi earned by his powerful nonviolent political and spiritual leadership in India before and after it achieved independence. Gandhi differed from other leaders in that he refused to profit from the misfortunes of the oppressor, insisting that his adversaries be won over by the moral rightness of his position. A Hindu opposed to the partitioning of India and the creation of a separate Muslim state (Pakistan), he was assassinated by a fanatic Hindu enraged at Gandhi's solicitude for the Muslims.

Jawaharlal Nehru was a protégé of Gandhi's , the leader of the Indian National Congress, and eventually, prime minister of the country.

Friends and comrades, the light has gone out of our lives and there is darkness everywhere. I do not know what to tell you and how to say it. Our beloved leader, Bapu as we called him, the father of the nation, is no more. Perhaps I am wrong to say that. Nevertheless, we will not see him again as we have seen him for these many years. We will not run to him for advise and seek solace from hi, and that is a terrible blow, not to me only, but to millions and millions in this country, and it is a little difficult to soften the blow by any other advise that I or anyone else can give you.

The light has gone out, I said, and yet I was wrong. For the light that shone in this country was no ordinary light. The light that has illumined this country for these many years will illumine this country for many more years, and a thousand years later that light will still be seen in this country, and the world will see it and it will give solace to innumerable hearts. For that light represented the living truth ... the eternal truths, reminding us of the right path, drawing us from error, taking this ancient country to freedom.

All this has happened when there was so much more for him to do. We could never think that he was unnecessary or that he had done his task. But now, particularly, when we are faced with so many difficulties, his not being with us is a blow most terrible to bear.

A madman has put an end to his life, for I can only call him mad who did it, and yet there has been enough of poison spread in this country during the past years and months, and this poison has effect on people's minds. We must face this poison, we must root out this poison, and we must face all the perils that encompass and face them not madly or badly but rather in the way that our beloved teacher taught us to face them.. The first thing to remember no wish that no one of us dare misbehave because we're angry. We have to behave like strong and determined people, determined to face all the perils that surround us, determined to carry out the mandate that our great teacher and our great leader had given us, remembering always that if, as I believe, his sprit looks upon us and sees u, nothing would displease his soul so much as to see that we have indulged in any small behaviour or any violence.

So we must not do that. But that does not mean that we should be weak, but rather that we should in strength and in unity face all the troubles and difficulties and conflicts must be ended in the face of this great disaster. A great disaster is a symbol to us to remember all the big things of life and forget the small things, of which we have thought too much."
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