tv President Obama Awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom CSPAN November 24, 2016 10:00am-11:15am EST
today. happy thanksgiving to you, we'll tomorrow at 7 a.m. we'll see you then. >> remarks from nebraska from ben sasse uneconomic posterity. economic prosperity. later, highlights of some of the places the city's tour has visited and 2016. the president-elect donald trump of florida tweeted out a video
saying let us give thanks for all that we have an boldly face exciting new frontiers that lie ahead. happy thanksgiving. tweets nowswoman more than ever, we should reflect on our shared values. happy thanksgiving from my family to yours. on thanksgiving, let us give thanks for all the blessings we enjoy and thanking the men and women of our armed forces. from neweanne shaheen hampshire tweeting, remember, there is more that unites us than divides us. let's give thanks, past the turkey, and skip the politics. president obama awarded 21 recipients the presidential medal of freedom during his or money at the white house. it is the nation's highest civilian award for national security, world peace, and
cultural endeavors. some of this year's recipient includes michael jordan, diana ross, tom hanks, and bruce springsteen. it is one hour and 10 minutes. [applause] pres. obama: we have some work to do here. this is not all fun and games. welcome to the white house, everybody. celebrate extraordinary americans love lifted our spirits, strengthened our union, pushed us towards progress. , always love doing this event but this is a particularly impressive class. [laughter]
artists,novators and rabble-rousers, -- [laughter] athletes, renowned character actors like the guy from "space jam." [laughter] we pay tribute to those distinguished individuals with our nation's highest civilian honor, the presidential medal of freedom. let me tell you of the bit about each of them. first, we came close to missing out on a bill and melinda gates incredible partnership because apparently bill's opening line go out two want to weeks from this coming saturday.
[laughter] he is good with computers, but -- [laughter] fortunately, melinda believes in second chances, and the world is better for it. for two decades, the gates foundation has worked to provide life-saving medical care to millions boosting clean water supplies, improving education , rallyingildren aggressive international action on climate change. inting childhood mortality half, and the list could go on. these two have donated more money to turtle causes -- more money to charitable causes than anyone ever. melinda's mom told her, to know that even one life breeze easier -- breathe is easier is a success.
measure, no other two have been more optimistic than these two optimist. i was an outsider from the beginning, he says. for better or worse, i thrive on it. frank grew up in los angeles, and throughout his life, he embraced the spirit of the city defined by an open horizon and spend his life be thinking shapes and mediums, seemingly the force of gravity itself, the idea of what architecture could to constantly repurpose every material available from titanium to paper towel tubes. inspiring our next generation from his advocacy for arts education in our schools.
chicago'suggenheim to millennial park, to his home in santa monica, which i understand causes consternation among his neighbors. frank's work teaches us while building may be sturdy and fixed to the ground, like rate artwork, he can sort and broaden our horizons. when another graduated from blue appellations -- when a graduate from rural appellations tried to show more is not just a victory or a loss, that individual lives, she considered how the landscape might shape that message. linproject that maya designed for college class b plus and a letter b permanent place in american history. [laughter] plus students b
out there, -- vietnam memorial has changed the way we think about monuments, and how we think about sacrifice , patriotism, and ourselves. maya has given us places to make new memories through sculptures , theirchapels, homes physical acts of poetry reminding us a most important element in art or architecture is human emotion. three minutes before armstrong aldrin touched on the moon, apollo 11's lunar alarms triggered. our astronauts did not have much time, but thankfully, they had margaret hamilton. a young m.i.t. scientist and a working mom in the 60's, margaret let a team that created the onboard flight software that allowed the eagle to allow safely.
at this time, software engineering was not even a field yet. or were no textbooks to follow. there was no choice but to be pioneers. luckily for us, margaret never stop pioneering and she symbolizes that generation of unsung women who send humankind into space. in architecture echoes countless technology today. enter spirit exists in every to lookirl a little boy beyond the heavens and look within ourselves and figure out what is possible. born in 1906, grace murray hopper followed her mother into mathematics and order phd from longand set out on a
career. at age 37, and a full 15 pounds below military guidelines, the girl set tolorful work on the government computers. she saw beyond the boundaries of the possible and invented the first compiler, which allowed programs to be written in regular language and translated into computers to understand. while the women who pioneered software were often overlooked, the most prestigious award for young computer scientists bear her name. from cell phones to cyber command, we can thank grace hopper for opening programming to millions more people, helping to usher in the information age, and profoundly shaping our digital world. people, of really smart and the summer of 1950, a young university chicago to assist found himself at los alamos national laboratory.
chicago paid his faculty for nine months, but his family eight for 12. [laughter] dick helped to create the hydrogen bomb, for the rest of his life, he to the threatlife of nuclear war. he's not only an architect of the atomic age, ever since he was a cleveland kid, he has never met a problem he did not want to solve. economists satellites, gps technology, the touchscreen all bears fingerprints. washertented a muscle for shellfish, which that i have not used. [laughter] the other stuff, i have. [laughter] it? is [laughter] dick has advised nearly every
president since eisenhower. and another smart guy is said to have called dick the only true genius he government. i do want to see this muscle washer. [laughter] ,long with the scientists artists, and thinkers, we honor those who shape our culture from the stage and screen. and her long and extraordinary onlyr, sisley tyson is not an actress, but has shape the course of history. she was never the likeliest of hollywood stars. from immigrants from the west indies, she was raised by religious mother who cleaned houses and forbade her children to attend the movies, but once she got her education and broken to the business, she made a conscious decision to speak out. i would not said rules, she said, unless the protected us, particularly women.
sisley tyson's convictions and grace have helped us to see the dignity of every single beautiful member of the american family. and she is just gorgeous. [laughter] [applause] in 1973, a critic wrote of robert de niro, this kid doesn't just act, she takes off into the vapors. are true, the characters iconic. the sicilian father turned new york mobster, the monster that runs a casino, and mobster who needs therapy. [laughter] is scared ofaw who a lobster. al capone, a mobster. [laughter]
robert combined dramatic precision and it turns out comedic timing with his signature eye for detail, and while the name de niro is synonymous with tough guy, his true gift is sensitivity he brings to each roll -- role. -- he is alsop as a director, philanthropists, and cofounder of the tribeca film festival. with his tireless preparation for learning the saxophone to remaking his body, he says, i feel like i have to earn the right to play a part. in 1976, lorne michaels implored the beatles to reunite on his brand-new show. in exchange, he offered them $3000. [laughter]
them they could shared equally or they could give ringo -- or they could give ringo a smaller cut. [laughter] on saturday night live, he has created a world of no names becomes comedy's biggest stars, were our friends the coneheads and the cheerleaders and land sharks and basement deadbeats and motivational speakers, and andnfrozen caveman lawyer, tom hanks is on black jeopardy. [laughter] after four decades, even in his fractured media culture that we mainland intons a not just our counterculture but our culture.
still a challenge to the powerful, especially folks like me. years, he all these says that his tombstone should bear a single word -- i'm even. [laughter] uneven.ord -- [laughter] as a current u.s. senator would say, that is why people like you. [laughter] he produced a senator, too. way ofegeneres has a making you laugh about something rather than at someone. except when i danced on her show, she laughed at me. [laughter] but that is ok. now when weo forget --e come so far, we are now
marriage is equal under the law. just how much courage was out ond for alan to come the most public of stages almost 20 years ago? just how important it was, not just to the lgbtq nudity, but for all of us -- not just for the lgbt community, but for all of us, someone who could be your neighbor, coley, sister, challenge our own assumptions, reminded us that we have more common than we realize, push our country in the direction of justice. what an incredible burden that was to bear to risk your career like that. people don't do that very often. then to have the hopes of millions on your shoulders. says, we like ellen that cana tortila chip support its way to guacamole, which really makes no sense to me. [laughter] but i thought would break the
mood. [laughter] i was getting kind of choked up. [laughter] and she did pay a price. we do not remember this. i had not remembered it. she did for a pretty long stretch of time. , and yet,llywood today, every day and in every ellenlan counters -- counters what divides us. one joke, one dance at a time. wins's racedidate in the iconic 1972 film of the , as name, which continues some of you are too young, but
perhaps the best movie on what politics is like ever, he famously asks his campaign manager a reflective and revealing question -- what do we do now? and life in many play in that moving, -- in that movie, robert redford has applied his talent and charm to achieve success. we admire bob not just for his remarkable acting, but for having figured out what to do next. he created a platform for independent filmmakers with the sundance institute. you supported our national parks and national resources as one of the foremost conservationists of our generation. he is given his unmatched charisma to unforgettable characters like roy hobbs and the sundance kid, entertaining us for half a century. producer,r, director,
and an advocate, he has not stopped. and apparently tries so fast that he had -- at 80 years young, robert redford has no plans to slow down. headline,to a recent the movie was the slowly last rather we should never travel with tom hanks. [laughter] i mean, think about it, you have pirates, plane crashes, you get marooned in airport purgatory. [laughter] volcanoes. something happens [laughter] with tom hanks. [laughter] and yet, somehow we cannot resist going where he wants to take us. an accidental witness to history, a crusty woman's baseball manager, every man who fell in love with meg ryan three times. [laughter] -- made it natural seem natural to have a volleyball is your best friend. [laughter]
from a philadelphia courtroom to normandy's beachhead to the dark side of the moon, he has introduced us to america's unassuming heroes. tom says he just saw ordinary guys who did the right thing at the right time. well it takes one to know one. america's dad has stood up to cancer with his beloved wife, rita, challenged -- supported heroes, and saved his best role for bill life, he is a good man, which is the best thing you can be. we entertainers artists, and three more folks have dedicated .hemselves to public service in the early 1960's, thousands of cuban children fled to america seeking an education they would never get back home. one refugee was a 15-year-old named eduardo pedron whose life got a bachelor's
degree, a message degree, and a phd. choice, and he chose to create more storage just like his. president, hes has built a dream factory for one of our nation's most of her student bodies, 165,000 students in all. world'se of the preeminent education leaders, supporting students throughout their lives and embodying the belief that we are only as great as the doors we open. eduardo's example is one we could all final -- we could all follow. when eloise koval filed a lawsuit to recover lands and money for her people, she did not set out to be a hero, she said, i just wanted to give people -- i just wanted to give
justice to people who did not have it. in her lifelong quest to address the mismanagement of american indian lands, resources, trust funds, it was not about special treatment, but the equal treatment at the heart of the american promise. she fought for almost 15 years across three presidents, seven trials, 10 appearances in court and traveled the country some 40 weeks a year telling the story of her people. in the end, this graduate of a one from schoolhouse became a macarthur genius. she was a proud daughter of montana's blackfeet nation. reached ultimately a historic victory for all native americans. through sheer force of will and believe that the truth would one and then out. she overcame the longest odds reminding us for fighting for what is right is always worth it. room,journalist in the
every media critic knows the phrase, vast wasteland. words that he prefers us remember -- public interest. that has been the heartbeat of his life's work, advocating for residents of public housing, cementing presidential debates as our national institution, leaving the sec. firste helped launch the andunication satellite making gps and cell phones possible, he predicted it would be more important than the moon landing. this will launch ideas into space, he said. and ideas last longer than people. one ofas i know, he is the only ones present on my first date with michelle. [laughter] imagine our surprise when we saw
him at the movie theater? [laughter] he his been vital to my personal interests. honor five time of the all-time greats in sports and music. the game of baseball has a handful of signature sounds -- the crack of the bat, the crowd singing in the seventh inning stretch, and you got the voice of scully. listen to the game's broadcast when they can't see the game. you did not want to miss one of vince stories. he taught with us.
robinson started at since jackie-- robinson started at second base, he narrated the heroics in turn context of the conversation. we had to inform him that to americans of all ages, you arnold friend. in fact, i thought about him during all of these citations, which would've been very cool. [laughter] [applause] i thought we should make him sing for his supper. [laughter] up next, -- [laughter] [applause]
here is how great kareem abdul-jabbar was. 1967, he spent a year dominating college basketball. the ncaa bans the dunk. they did not say it was about kareem, but it was about kareem. [laughter] sport changes its rules to make it harder just for you, you are really good. [laughter] [applause] and yet, despite the rule change, he was still the sport's most unstoppable force. the title he would hold for more than two decades, winning nba finals, mvps, a staggering 14 years apart. bless you. [laughter] and a surprisingly similar murdochcopilot, burger
-- roger murdock once said in the movie "airplane." [laughter] we have some great actors here. "space jam," "airplane." he did it all while dragging others up for 48 minutes. [laughter] but the reason we honor kareem is more than just a pair of goggles and the skyhook. he stood up for his muslim faith when it was not easy or popular. he is as comfortable sparring with bruce the as he is advocating on capitol hill, or writing with extraordinary eloquence about patriotism. physically, intellectually, spiritually, kareem is a one-of-a-kind. he illuminates our most basic freedoms and highest aspirations. when he was five years old, michael jordan nearly cut off his big toe with an ax. [laughter]
back then, his handle needed a little work. but think, if things had gone differently, air jordan's might never have taken flight. [laughter] i mean, you don't want to buy issue with one toe missing. [laughter] we may not have seen him drop 63 in the garden, or hit the shot three different times over georgetown, heathrow, russell. we might not have seen him take on larry bird in horse, or lift globallyort locally -- along with the dream team. yet, mj is more than those moments, more than just the best player on the two greatest teams of all time -- the dream team and the 1996 chicago bulls. he is more than just a logo,
more than just an internet meme. [laughter] more than just a charitable donor or business owner. committed to diversity. there is a reason you call somebody the michael jordan of. the michael jordan of neurosurgery, the michael jordan of rabbis. [laughter] for the michael jordan of outworking canoeing. ofthe michael jordan canoeing. they know what you are talking about. because michael jordan is the michael jordan of greatness. he is the definition of somebody so good at what they do, that everybody recognizes it. that is pretty great. -- that is pretty rare. as a child, diana ross loved singing and dancing for family friends, but not for free. [laughter] she was a smart enough to pass of the hat. -- she was smart enough to pass the hat.
later, at a housing project she met mary wilson and florence ballard. her neighbor, smokey robinson put them in front of barry go,rdy and the rest was magic. musical history. the supremes earned a permanent place in the american soundtrack. along with her honeyed voice and soulful sensibility, diana ross exuded glamour and grace and filled stages to help shape the sound of motown. on top of becoming one of the most successful recording artists of all time, and raising five kids, somehow found time to earn an oscar nomination for acting. today, from the hip-hop artist s that sample her to those , inspired by her, to the audiences who still cannot get enough of her, diana ross's influence is as inescapable as ever. she was sprung from a cage out
on highway nine. [laughter] a quiet kid from jersey, trying to make sense of dreams and the mysteries that dotted his hometown -- pool halls, cars, girls, altars, assembly lines. and for decades, bruce springsteen has brought us all along on a journey, consumed with the bargains between ambition and injustice, pleasure, and plain -- and pain. the simple glories and scattered heartbreak of everyday life in america. to create one of his biggest hits, he once said, i wanted to craft a record that sounded like the last record on earth. the last one you would ever need to hear. one glorious voice. then the apocalypse. every restless kid in america was given a score, born to run. he did not stop there. once he told us about himself he told us about everybody else.
steelworker in youngstown, the vietnam vet in born to run, born in the usa. the sick and marginalized on the streets of philadelphia. the firefighter carrying the weight of a nation. the young soldier reckoning with devils and dust in iraq. the communities knocked down by recklessness and greed. all of us with our faults and failings, every color and class and creed, bound together by one defiance, restless train rolling toward the land of hope and dreams. these are all anthems of our america. the reality of who we are and the reverie of who we want to be. the hallmark of a rock 'n roll band, bruce springsteen once said, is that the narrative you tell together is bigger than any one could have told on your own. for decades, alongside the big man, little steven a jersey girl , named patty, and all the men
and women of the e street band, bruce springsteen has been carrying the rest of us on his journey asking us all, what is , the work for us to do in our short time here? i am the president, he is the boss. [laughter] and pushing 70, he is still sets. down for our live hour long sets. he is working. rock 'n roll. i thought twice about giving him a medal named for freedom because we hope he remains in his words, a prisoner of rock 'n roll for years to come. [laughter] so i told you, this is like a , really good class. [laughter] ladies and gentlemen, i want you all to give it up for the recipients of the 2016 presidential medal of freedom. [applause]
this is a good group. all right. now, we actually got to give medals. so, please the patient. we are going to have my military aide read the citations. each one of them will come up and receive the medals and then we will wrap up the program. ok. let's hit it. >> kareem abdul-jabbar. [applause] an iconic basketball player who
revolutionized the sport with his all-around play and signature skyhook. he is a 19 time all-star, six-time world champion, and the leading scorer in nba history. adding to his achievements on the court, he also left his mark off it, advocating for civil rights, cancer research, science education, and social justice. in doing so, kareem abdul-jabbar leave a towering legacy of compassion, face, and service to others. a legacy based on the strength and grace of his athleticism, but also the size and strength of his heart. [applause]
>> kurt cobell, excepting the medal in honor of his mother, elouise cobell. yellow bird woman. [applause] >> a member of the blackfeet nation, elouise cobell spent her defyingfind the odds -- the odds and working on behalf of the people. as a young woman, she was told she was not capable of understanding accounting. so she mastered the field and user expertise to champion a lawsuit whose historic settlement has helped restore tribal homeland to her beloved tribe and many other tribes. her unwavering spirit lives on in the thousands of people and hundreds of tribes for whom she thought, and all those she taught to believe it is never too late to right the wrongs of the past and help shape a better future. [applause]
>> ellen degeneres. [applause] [laughter] >> in a career spending three decades ellen degeneres has , lifted our spirits and brought joy to our lives as a standup comic, actor, and television star. in every role, she reminds us to be kind to one another and treat people as each of us wants to be treated. at a pivotal moment, her courage and candor helped change the hearts and lives of many americans, accelerating our nation's constant drive towards acceptance for all. again and again, ellen degeneres
has shown us that a single individual to make the world a more fun, more open, more loving place, so long as we just keep swimming. [applause] >> robert de niro. [applause] >> for over 50 years, robert de niro has delivered some of the screen's most memorable performances, cementing his place as one of the most gifted actors of his generation.
from "the godfather part two" to "the deer hunter," he is relentlessly dedicated to his craft, embodies his characters, creating rich, nuanced portraits affecting second part of the human experience. regardless of genre or era robert continues to demonstrate , that extraordinary skill that has made him one of america's most revered artists. [applause] >> richard l. garwin [applause] >> one of the most renowned of
-- renowned scientists of our time dr. richard garwin has , answered the call to solve some of society's most challenging problems. he has given technologies that underscore the importance of humanity to control the spread of nuclear arms. through his advice to democratic and republicans since eisenhower, his inventions have powered technology for our modern world. he is not only contributed to this nation's security and prosperity but quality of life , for people all over the world. [applause]
>> william h. gates, iii and melinda french gates. [applause] >> few people have had the profound global impact of bill and melinda gates. through their work through their foundation, they have demonstrated how the most capable and fortunate among us have a responsibility to use their talents and resources to tackle the world's greatest challenges. from helping women and girls lifted themselves and their families out of poverty, to empowering and minds across america, they have transformed countless lives with their generosity and innovation. bill and melinda gates continue to inspire us with their optimism that together we can remake the world as it should be. [applause]
>> frank gehry. [applause] >> never limited by conventional materials, style, or processes, his bold and thoughtful structures show architectures ability to revitalize communities. a creative mind from an early age, he began his career by building imaginary homes and cities from scrap material from his grandfather's hardware store.
since then he balances between , experimentation and functionality, and is great as some of our most iconic buildings. from his pioneering use of technology, from the dozens of awe-inspiring sights that they are his signature style come into his public service as a signature artist through his work with turnaround arts, frank gehry has proven himself an exemplary person. [applause] >> margaret hayfield hamilton. [applause] >> a pioneer in technology, or good hamilton defined new forms
of software engineering and helped launch an industry that would forever change human history. her software architecture led to giant leaps for human kind, writing the code that helped america set foot on the moon. she broke barriers in founding her own software businesses, revolutionizing an industry and inspiring countless women to participate in stem fields. her love of exploration and innovation are the source code of the american spirit, and her genius has inspired generations to reach for the stars. [applause] >> thomas j. hanks. [applause]
>> throughout a distinguished film career, tom hanks has revealed the character of america, as well as his own. portraying war heroes and after not, as ship captain, a cartoon cowboy, a young man growing up too fast and dozens of others, he has allowed us to see ourselves as we are and as we aspire to be. on-screen and off, tom hanks has honor the sacrifices of those who have served our nation, called on us all to think big and to believe, and inspired a new generation of young people to reach for the sky. [laughter] [applause]
>> debra murray excepting on behalf of her great aunt grace mary hopper. [laughter] [applause] >> as a child who loved disassembling alarm clocks admiral grace murray hopper , found her calling early, with yale known today as , the queen of code, grace hopper's work helps make coding language more accessible and practical. she invented the first compiler or translator, a fundamental aspect of our digital world. amazing grace made the language of commuter programming -- computer programming more universal. we honor her contributions to computer science and the sense
of possibility she inspired in the generations of young people. [applause] >> michael j. jordan. [applause] [laughter] >> powered by a drive to compete that earned him every major award in basketball, including six nba championships five most , valuable player awards, and gold medals, michael jordan's name has become synonymous with excellence. his wagging tongue and
highflying dunks the defined, making him a global superstar that transcended basketball and shaped our larger culture. from chicago, to the owner sweetie occupies today, his life and example have inspired millions of americans to strive to be like mike. [applause] maya y. lin. [applause] >> boldly challenging our
understanding of the world, maya lin's designs have brought people of all walks of life together in spirits of remembrance, introspection, and humility. the manipulation of natural terrain and topography within her works inspires us to bridge our differences and recognize the gravity of our collective existence. her pieces have changed the landscape of our country and influenced the dialogue of our society. never more profoundly than with her tribute to the americans who fell in vietnam, by cutting a wound into the earth to create a sacred place of healing in our nation's capital. [applause] >> lorne michaels. [applause]
>> one of the most transformative entertainment figures of our time, lorne michaels followed his dreams to new york city, where he created a sketch show that brought satire, wits, and modern comedy to homes around the world. under his meticulous command as executive producer, "saturday night live" has entertained audiences across generations, reflecting and shaping critical elements of our cultural, political, and national life. lorne michaels' creative legacy stretches into late-night television, sitcoms, and the big screen, making us laugh, challenging us to think, and raising the bar for those who follow. as one of his show's signature characters would say, well, isn't that special? [laughter] [applause]
newton n. minow. [applause] >> as a soldier, counsel to the governor of illinois, chairman of the federal communications commission, and law clerk to the chief justice of the supreme court, newton minow's career has been defined by his devotion to others. deeply committed to his family, the law, and the american people, his dedication to serving and empowering the public is reflected in his efforts to ensure that broadcast media educates and provides opportunity for all. challenging the media to better serve their viewers, his staunch commitment to the power of ideas and information has transformed telecommunications and its influential role in our society. [applause]
>> dr. eduardo j. padron. [applause] >> as a teenage refugee from cuba, eduardo padron came to the united states to pursue the american dream, and he has spent his life making that dream real for others. as president of the community college he once attended, his thoughtful leadership and commitment to education have transformed miami-dade college into one of the premier learning institutions in the country, earning him praise around the world. his personal story and lasting professional influence prove that success need not be determined by our background,
but by our dedication to others, our passion for creating an america that is as inclusive as it is prosperous. [applause] >> robert redford. [applause] >> robert redford has captivated audiences from both sides of the camera through entertaining motion pictures that often explore vital social, political, and historical themes. his lifelong advocacy on behalf of preserving our environment will prove as an enduring legacy as will his award-winning films, as will his pioneering support for independent filmmakers across america. his art and activism continue to
shape our nation's cultural heritage, inspiring millions to laugh, cry, think, and change. [applause] >> diana ross. [applause] >> a daughter -- [laughter] >> a daughter of detroit, diana ross helped create the sound of motown with her iconic voice. from her groundbreaking work with the supremes, to a solo career that has spanned decades, she has influenced generations
of young artists and shaped our nation's musical landscape. in addition to a grammy lifetime achievement award and countless musical accolades, diana ross has distinguished herself as an actor, earning an oscar nomination and a golden globe award. with over 25 albums, unforgettable hit singles, and live performances that continue to captivate audiences around the world, diana ross still reigns supreme. [applause] >> next up, vin scully.
[applause] >> with a voice that transcended a sport and transformed a profession, vin scully narrated america's pastime for generations of fans. known to millions as the soundtrack of summer, he found time to teach us about life and love while chronicling routine plays and historic heroics. in victory and in defeat, his colorful accounts reverberated through the bleachers, across the airwaves, and into our homes and imaginations. he is an american treasure and a beloved storyteller, and our country's gratitude for vin scully is as profound as his love for the game. [applause]
>> bruce f. springsteen. [applause] as a songwriter, humanitarian, america's rock 'n' roll laureate, and new jersey's greatest ambassador, bruce springsteen is quite simply the boss. through stories about ordinary people, from vietnam veterans to steelworkers, his songs captured the pain and the promise of the american experience. with his legendary e street band, bruce springsteen leaves everything onstage in epic, communal live performances that have rocked audiences for decades. with empathy and honesty, he
>> for 60 years, cicely tyson has graced the screen and the stage, enlightening us with her groundbreaking characters and calls to conscious humility and hope. her achievements as an actor, her devotion to her faith, and her commitment to advancing equality for all americans, especially women of color, have touched audiences of multiple generations. from "the autobiography of miss jane pittman" to "sounder" to "the trip to bountiful," cicely tyson's performances illuminate the character of our people and the extraordinary possibilities of america. [applause]
president obama: on a personal reason these the events are so special to me is because everyone on this stage has touched me in a very powerful, personal way. in ways that they probably could not imagine. whether it was inspired by a story, a film, , or introducing me to michelle. helpedre folks that have
make me who i am and think about my presidency. and what also makes it special is this is america. and it is useful when you think about this incredible collection of people to realize that this is what makes us the greatest nation on earth, not because of what we -- [applause] president obama: not because of our differences, but because in our difference, we find something common to share. and what a glorious thing that is, what a great gift that is to america. so i want all of you to enjoy the wonderful reception that will be taking place afterwards. michelle and i have to get back
to work, unfortunately, but i hear the food is pretty good. and would like all of you to give one big rousing round of applause to our 2016 honorees for the presidential medal of freedom. give it up. [cheers and applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [cheers and applause]
the state of the black world conference discussing the impact of the 20 16th election. the rector ofll, the national coalition for black civic participation, and also the mayor of newark, new jersey. >> when we get together as black this country with an agenda, we have to unite with other people to win. the object is to win. we do not want to struggle for the struggle's sake. there thousands of people that are in jail, that have been beaten, that are dead -- we are not activists and revolutionaries because it is fun. my mother and father did not participate in the movement for twitter,wards, instagram, to be praised.
they did it because it was necessary. >> damascus senator ben sasse on founding fathers in the purpose of government. >> the meaning of america is persuasion and love. the meaning of america is building a better product or creating a better service, persuading someone to marry you, joining your church or synagogue. there is a civic mindedness in american history. gingrich at 6:30 newt discusses opioid medication and treatment. >> people have to change their minds, have willpower -- but they also have to change their brain. this is a biological thing. your brain is an oregon. when the doctors hand you the pills and say we took a molar out of your mouth, take these hills, for a lot of people the
pills damage that oregon. >> watch c-span and c-span.org and listen on the free c-span radio app. >> yesterday, at the white house, president obama pardoned turkeys tater and tot. those turkeys are from iowa and will travel to gobblers rest at virginia tech university in blacksburg. >> ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states. [applause] president obama: thank you so much, everybody. please have a seat. for generations, presidents have faithfully executed two great american traditions: issuing a proclamation that sets aside a
thursday in november for us to express gratitude, and granting pardons that reflect our beliefs in second chances. this week, we do both. thanksgiving is a family holiday as much as a national one. for the past seven years, i have established another tradition. embarrassing my daughters with bad jokes about turkeys. this year, they had a scheduling conflict. actually, they just couldn't take my jokes anymore. they were fed up. fortunately, i have by my side here today two of my nephews, austin and aaron robinson, who unlike my daughters have not been turned cynical by washington. they still believe in bad puns.
they appreciate the grandeur of this occasion. they still have hope. melia and sasha are thankful this is my final turkey pardon. what i haven't told them is we are going to do this every year from now on. no cameras, just us, every year. no way i am cutting this habit cold turkey. [applause] presence obama: that was pretty funny. thanksgiving is a chance to gather with loved ones, reflect on our many blessings, and after a long campaign season, finally turn our attention from polls to poultry. this year, we are honored to be joined by two of the lucky ones. tater and tot.
tater is here in a backup role just in case tot can't fulfill his duties. he is kind of like the vice turkey. we are working on getting him a pair of aviator glasses. it is my great privilege, it is my privilege -- actually let's , just say it is my job, to grant them clemency this afternoon. as i do, i want to take a moment to recognize the brave turkeys who were not so lucky. who did not get to ride the gravy train to freedom. who met their fate with courage and sacrifice and proved they were not chicken. [laughter] president obama: it is not that bad, now. come on. of course, we have a lot to be thankful for this thanksgiving. six great years of job creation. the longest streak ever.
low unemployment. wages are rising, inequality is narrowing. the housing market is healing. the stock market has nearly tripled. our high school graduation rate is at an all-time high. our uninsured rate is at an all-time low. [applause] president obama: that is worth gobbling about. proud families are finally complete now that marriage equality is the law of the land. there are many families of service members who had md empty chairs in recent years but can celebrate with our brave troops and veterans who we welcomed home. thanksgiving is also a reminder of the source of our national strength. out of many, we are one. we are bound not by one race or religion but by adherence to a common creed.
that all of us are created equal. wow accepting our differences and building a diverse society has never been easy, it has never been more important. we are people that look out for one another. get each other's backs. we keep moving forward, defined by values and ideals. that have been a light to all humanity. we have to teach ourselves and each other because we all have families we love. we all have hopes for their better future. we lose sight of that sometimes and thanksgiving is a good time for us to remember that you have more in common than divides us. the holidays are also a time when it is important to reach out to those who need a helping hand. i believe we are judged by how we care for the poor and vulnerable, the sick, the elderly the immigrant, the , refugee, everybody who is trying to get a second chance. in order to truly live up to those ideals, we have to continually fight discrimination in all its forms and show the
world that america is a generous and giving country. we should also make sure everyone has something to eat on thanksgiving. of course, except the turkeys, because they are already stuffed. later today, [laughter] president obama: later today, the obama family will participate in our traditional thanksgiving service project. when somebody at your table says you have been hogging all the side dishes and cannot have it anymore, i hope you respond with a creed that sums up the spirit of hungry people yes we cran. ,that was good. you don't think that is funny? i know there are some bad ones in here. this is the last time i'm doing this, so we are not leaving any room for leftovers.
how am i doing, good? let me just say one last thing before i spare these turkeys' lives. on this thanksgiving i want to express my sincere gratitude in the american people for the trust you have placed in me over the last eight years and the incredible kindness you have shown my family. on behalf of michelle and my mother-in-law, our girls, we want to thank you so much. and now, from the rose garden, tater and tot will go to their new home at virginia tech which is admittedly a bit hokey. they will get to live out their natural lives. they will be at a new facility called gobblers rest where students and veterinarians will care for them. let's get on with the pardoning. it is es