This is the text of a speech given by Richard Nixon during his 1960 presidential election campaign.
The Meaning Of Communism To Americans
by Vice-President Richard Nixon
The major problem confronting the people of the United States and free peoples everywhere in the last half of the 20th century is the threat to peace and freedom presented by the militant aggressiveness of international communism. A major weakness in this struggle is lack of adequate imderstanding of the character of the challenge which communism presents.
I am convinced that we are on the right side in this struggle and that we are well ahead now in its major aspects. But if we are to maintain our advantage and assure victory in the struggle, we must develop, not only among the leaders, but among the people of the free world a better understanding of the threat which confronts us.
The question is not one of being for or against communism. The time is long past when any significant number of Americans contend that communism is no particular concern of theirs. Few can still believe that communism is simply a curious and twisted philosophy which happens to appeal to a certain number of zealots but which constitutes no serious threat to the interests or ideals of free society.
The days of indifference are gone. The danger today in our attitude toward communism is of a very different kind. It lies in the fact that we have come to abhor communism so much that we no longer recognize the necessity of understanding it.