Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967

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Author: Lyndon B. Johnson  | Date: May 25, 1967

238
Remarks in Montreal Upon Presenting the United States Gift to the People of Canada.
May 25, 1967

Mr. Commissioner General, my friend Secretary Martin, Mr. Marks, Mr. Tupper, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen:

It is a very great pleasure to come here today to present this "Great Ring of Canada" to the people of Canada. It was made in the United States of America, but it is all Canadian.

The 12 crystal plaques commemorate your 10 Provinces and your 2 Territories. It displays their coats of arms and their official flowers.

There is also the motto of Canada. That motto is in Latin, which I will not attempt to recite. But I recognize the source, because it is from the Book of Psalms. And, in the version I read as a little boy, it promised that the "righteous shall have dominion also from sea to sea."

The psalm from which Canada takes her motto—and which is so often repeated in this "Great Ring"—contains some other thoughts, which I think would be quite appropriate to recall today.

It describes the just ruler, and it says:

"He shall judge thy people with righteousness, and thy poor with judgment . . .

"He shall judge the poor of the people, he shall save the children of the needy, and he shall break in pieces the oppressor . . .

"In his days shall the righteous flourish, and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth.

"He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth."

And so, Mr. Commissioner General, if the President of the United States may be permitted to comment on the internal affairs of a sister nation, Canada’s motto was well chosen.

We share the goals and the ideals that are expressed in that motto. It is my profound hope that this eloquent expression of it will be viewed by generations yet unborn, as a historic symbol. I hope they will have reason to remember it as tangible evidence that two great nations were united in their efforts to create the kind of world for which men have always longed, but really have never achieved.

If that comes to pass, then Canadians and Americans alike may well say for all time: Our ancestors pointed the way.

This is not a crystal ball. We cannot see all that just by looking into it. But I believe it is there. It is there in the history of Canada. It is there in the history of the United States. And I strongly suspect that what is sometimes cloudy and obscure to us will be as crystal clear to our grandchildren as this great work of art that we have come here to unveil today to our friends.

Thank you very much.

NOTE: The President spoke at 12 noon at the United States Pavilion during a visit to the Canadian Universal and International Exhibition, Montreal 1967 (EXPO ’67). In his opening words he referred to Pierre Dupuy, Commissioner General of EXPO ’67, Paul J. J. Martin, Canadian Secretary of State for External Affairs, Leonard H. Marks, Director of the United States Information Agency, and Stanley R. Tupper, United States Commissioner General for EXPO ’67.

The 12 crystal plaques were made of Steuben Glass at the Corning Glass Center, Corning, N.Y.

See also Items 237, 239.

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Chicago: Lyndon B. Johnson, "238 Remarks in Montreal Upon Presenting the United States Gift to the People of Canada.," Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967 in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1196 Original Sources, accessed August 11, 2022, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=51ZM9YYNJ5WRHR9.

MLA: Johnson, Lyndon B. "238 Remarks in Montreal Upon Presenting the United States Gift to the People of Canada." Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967, in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1196, Original Sources. 11 Aug. 2022. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=51ZM9YYNJ5WRHR9.

Harvard: Johnson, LB, '238 Remarks in Montreal Upon Presenting the United States Gift to the People of Canada.' in Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967. cited in , Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1967 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1196. Original Sources, retrieved 11 August 2022, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=51ZM9YYNJ5WRHR9.