Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy (191763)
And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for youask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.
President JOHN F. KENNEDY, inaugural address, January 20, 1961.The Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: John F. Kennedy, 1961, p. 3.
This is one of seven inscriptions carved on the walls at the gravesite of John F. Kennedy, Arlington National Cemetery.
He foreshadowed this remark earlier: But the New Frontier of which I speak is not a set of promisesit is a set of challenges. It sums up not what I intend to offer the American people, but what I intend to ask of them.Acceptance speech, Democratic national convention, Los Angeles, California, July 15, 1960, Vital Speeches of the Day, August 1, 1960, p. 611.