Public Papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955

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Author: Dwight D. Eisenhower  | Date: July 28, 1955

177
Remarks at the Ceremony Marking the Issuance of the Atoms for Peace Stamp.
July 28, 1955

Mr. Postmaster General, distinguished members of the diplomatic corps, my friends:

As the Postmaster General has said, we have here a stamp that looks to the future, and its design has followed that conception. Yet, it tends also to pose to us a question that is as old as history: Shall the inventiveness of man be used for good or for evil?

Every discovery we have made, even the use of fire to warm our bodies, to cook our food, has also been used as one of the devastating weapons of war to bring destruction to enemies. Every single thing that man has discovered can be used for good or for evil depending upon the purpose of man. This would seem to imply that man indeed has to look within himself before he can predict with any certainty, with any possibility of accuracy whatsoever, before he can determine what will be the final results of a great invention such as the discovery of nuclear fission and nuclear fusion.

The United States, as you well know, has been attempting to do its part in promoting the peaceful, the good uses of this new science. The Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission has outlined some of them to you. And, I should like to go further and leave no stone unturned in order to discover new ways inwhich all of us nations that love peace can, without threat to anybody else, without fear for our own security, move forward in this field.

Now, because of this belief, because of this feeling, because of this hope, I call your attention to what I think is a fortunate feature in the design of this stamp. We have the world bound together by new forces, bound together by the natural forces of science, and of nature, not split by them.

I hope, I devoutly pray that this is an augury of what will occur in the future—that through these great benefits there will become so deeply impressed upon our minds the benefits that can come from this new science, that finally men will look within themselves and find the courage to reject the impulses of their own avarice, their own selfishness, their own greed, be it individual or national, and attempt at least in this kind of work to proceed toward the good of us all.
Thank you very much for coming.

NOTE: The ceremony was held on the White House lawn. The President spoke following remarks by the Postmaster General and the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, which were also released.

The Postmaster General noted that the stamp carried a quotation from the President’s address before the United Nations General Assembly of December 8, 1953: "To find the way by which the inventiveness of man shall be consecrated to his life." Chairman Strauss called attention to the fact that the stamp was dedicated only a few days before the opening in Geneva of the first International Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy.

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Chicago: Dwight D. Eisenhower, "177 Remarks at the Ceremony Marking the Issuance of the Atoms for Peace Stamp.," Public Papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955 in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.860-861 745. Original Sources, accessed February 7, 2023, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8MS8ELLVIVGKDSY.

MLA: Eisenhower, Dwight D. "177 Remarks at the Ceremony Marking the Issuance of the Atoms for Peace Stamp." Public Papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955, in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.860-861, page 745. Original Sources. 7 Feb. 2023. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8MS8ELLVIVGKDSY.

Harvard: Eisenhower, DD, '177 Remarks at the Ceremony Marking the Issuance of the Atoms for Peace Stamp.' in Public Papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955. cited in , Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1955 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.860-861, pp.745. Original Sources, retrieved 7 February 2023, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8MS8ELLVIVGKDSY.