Thursday, 19 May 2016

Speeches That Changed History. Speeches That DIDN'T Change History.

 photo jfk.jpg

Speeches That Changed History.

I would like to report on an issue that has been left untouched for many years. The world has had many great speech writers over our short, but defined, history but much like aggressive foreign policy and teeth whitening the Americans are STREETS ahead of us Brits. What is not reported is that these writers only had one or two good speeches in them. Many of us are aware that some of the most heartfelt and moving speeches were written by someone other than the individual speaking the words. Those men and women are usually left nameless behind the stoic leaders of our generation. The story below will tell the tale of three famous speech writer’s you have never heard about and more importantly…their second speech.

Peter Gulch, “I have a dream…”, Given by Martin Luther King Jr. at the March of Washington

Now of course we all know this one. Written in a common format: Where we are now; where we want to be; where we are now; dreamed utopia etc… The opening line “I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation” is reminiscent of Stuart Pearce's rallying war cry at Euro 96 and will give many a reader the goosebumps. Many would say these were the best words ever written. Determination, love and freedom were key themes. The words “I have a dream…” spoken with conviction and dreamy eyed belief. It was magic. What we don’t hear about much is the second speech that Peter Gulch wrote for Dr. King later that year. This one did not go over as well. See excerpt below:

Peter Gulch, “Flags”, Given by Martin Luther King Jr on Flag Day 1963

“Flags?? Amiright? Hoo wow, dem tingz is PENG!. Stripes for days innit, some of them with bumps or stars or some shit, idk. But yeah, fo real I can’t get me enough of flags, fam. The other day I was in the flag shop trying to get me a stripey mother fucker and low and behold I got me a nice one! FLAGS, YEAH!!!! YAGETSMEH??!!”

Tracey Glue, “John F. Kennedy's Inaugural Address”, Washington D.C, 1961.

It goes without saying that these words delivered to the world in this speech were some of the most determined and impactful ever spoken. Not only did JFK put the world on notice that he would work to strengthen relationships with allies he would defend this nation and its values without hesitation (of course he was referring to the tensions with the Soviet Union at the time). The line “My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country” challenged all Americans to take responsibility for themselves and their neighbour. Something I feel their politicians may have forgotten today. Tracey Glue actually had a really good third speech that she wrote for Kennedy (see the 'space exploration speech' given to congress) but her second speech she penned for the president did not stand up to the muster of the previous and the latter. See below:

Tracey Glue, “Space?”, Given by John F. Kennedy, Boston, on a Wednesday.

“Let me begin by saying one word. One word is all I need to say this speech. Here it goes: Solar Systems! I am actually very sorry it seems as though that is two words. I actually think solar systems are great. Let’s look at the pros of them.
1). Earths are there (that is fantastic, right?).
2). Not only are they large but they can also be seen from SPACE!!! Hahaha, guys let’s get serious for a minute. We should go up there right? Solar systems are the shit bitches!!! For real though, I asked you all to do shit for your country…somebody go build me a mutha fuckin' space rocket!!! Lmao.”

Fred Mort, “On the Pulse of the Morning”, Maya Angelou, Clinton Inauguration, 1993.

Fred Mort was one of the most well-known speech writers but he loved dabbling in poetry and who better to deliver his verse other than the great American author, Maya Angelou. Although, more poetry than directed speech, these words lifted up the souls of, not only the Americans, but anybody that allowed themselves to dream. “So say the Asian, the Hispanic, The Jew, The African and Native American…”. We hear those words today and it reminds us, even here in northern England of the melting pot we live in. How, if it wasn't for our political discourse, we could, in a perfect world, live harmoniously with one each other. AND…if we tried really hard we could actually be happy about it. Of course…things didn’t go well for Mr. Mort on his next speech…

Fred Mort, “Large Penises”, Ron Jeremy, on set of “Plugged in the Butt 6”

“Ladies, I am going to need you to come over here and choke me. I am horny as hell and I am going to blow a load in like 8 seconds. You…over there! The one with the butt plug and large penis inside her, please bring me that bag of milk shakes over by my ass lube. Choke me SO MUCH!!!! By the way…who is chewing on my ass? Danielle? Wow seriously, great work, keep it up. Ok…its coming…I am going to blow, everybody hold out their cups this is going to be a big one…uhhhhhhhh….. BOOOM!!!!!”

If I had to choose a moral to this story it would be that speech writers should probably only write one speech. It’s not really a career, it’s more of a one off type of thing. Honestly, I don’t really understand words and the things that they mean.

Till next time.
Big love. Mark. X

No comments: