US Rep. John Brademas (D) of Indiana, in an address to graduates at Union College in, Schenectady, N.Y.-spoke about "Our Global Illiteracy." The following comments ended his talk:
Our economy, our security, our very civilization, depend in large part on how successfully we overcome our general illiteracy about the rest of the world.
We Americans live in a time of danger and a time of hope.
We live in a relationship with the other superpower, the Soviet Union, that is characterized by uneven degrees of cooperation and the most intense competition.
We live in continuing collaboration -- and confrontation -- with our allies in Western Europe and Japan.
We live in a wide diversity of relationships with the poorer countries of Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
In such a time and in such a world, we need to know not only how to read, write, and understand the languages and culture of our own nation, but of the other nations of the world as well.
Only then will we be truly literate.
Only then will we be truly secure.
Only then will we be truly free.
Thank you and good fortune.