Kerry: I Get 'A Little Uptight When I Hear Politicians Say How Exceptional We Are'
7:06 AM, Jul 15, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
As John Kerry travels from country to country on various diplomatic missions as secretary of state (almost half a million miles so far), he often addresses the staff and their families at the U.S. embassies in the countries he visits. Remarks at these informal gatherings are often more casual than the usual speeches or press appearances, and Kerry often jokes with the staff and recognizes employees of long standing with the State Department. Monday, Kerry had one such opportunity in Vienna, Austria, the last stop on his most recent trip, and towards the end of his talk he recalled his two Yale commencement speeches, forty-eight years apart, where he discussed "sort of the world we’re in" and America's place in it:
Despite his profession of uptightness on the topic of America's exceptionalism, Kerry went on to close out his remarks explaining what he believes makes America uniquely exceptional:
Kerry used similar language in his 2014 Yale commencement address, noting that the American idea is what makes America different: that all are "created equal and all endowed with unalienable rights" and that "America is an idea and we – all of us, you – get to fill it out over time."
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