Mario Cuomo: ‘Speech about fairness’ (6)
We believe in firm but fair law and order, in the union movement, in privacy for people, openness by government, civil rights, and human rights. We believe in a single fundamental idea that describes better than most textbooks and any speech what a proper government should be. The idea of family, mutuality, the sharing of benefits and burdens for the good of all. Feeling one another’s pain. Sharing one another’s blessings.
Reasonably, honestly, fairly – without respect to race, or sex, or geography or political affiliation. We believe we must be the family of America, recognizing that at the heart of the matter we are bound one to another, that the problems of a retired schoolteacher in Duluth are our problems. That the future of the child in Buffalo is our future. The struggle of a disabled man in Boston to survive, to live decently is our struggle. The hunger of a woman in Little Rock, our hunger. The failure anywhere to provide what reasonably we might, to avoid pain, is our failure.
For fifty years we Democrats created a better future for our children, using traditional Democratic principles as a fixed beacon, giving us direction and purpose, but constantly innovating, adapting to new realities: Roosevelt’s Alphabet programmes; Truman’s Nato and the GI Bill of Rights; Kennedy’s intelligent tax incentives and the Alliance for Progress; Johnson’s Civil Rights; Carter’s Human Rights and the nearly miraculous Camp David Peace Accord. We will have America’s first woman Vice-President: the child of immigrants, a New Yorker, opening with one magnificent stroke a whole new frontier for the United States. It will happen – if we make it happen. I ask you – ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters – for the good of all of us – for the love of this great nation, for the family of America – for the love of God, please, make this nation remember how futures are built.