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Bob Dylan receives 2012 Medal of Freedom

Credit: Wikipedia Commons
Presidential Medal of Freedom
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Obama bestowed the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Bob Dylan, Madeleine Albright, and a host of other people at a White House, in an East Room ceremony, today.

The Medal of Freedom is America's highest civilian honor. It is presented to those individuals who've made meritorious contributions to the national interests of the United States, to world peace world peace, culture or who have undertaken “other significant public or private endeavors.”

The LA Times noted that, a number of figures from the struggles and shifts of the 1960s were recognized Tuesday. Civil right's campaigner Dolores Huerta and astronaut and former US Senator John Glenn also received the medal.

The year 1962 stands out, they recognized, in President Obama’s picks: "That was the year Dylan put out his first album, when Huerta cofounded the National Farm Workers Assn. and when Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth."

MadeleineAlbright was the 1st woman to hold the top U.S. diplomatic job, John Glenn was the 1st American to orbit the earth. Summitt led the University of Tennessee women's basketball team to more NCAA Final Four appearances than any other team. And Dylan's vast catalog of songs includes such rock classics as "Like a Rolling Stone," "Blowin' in the Wind" and "Mr. Tambourine Man."

The entire list of 13 those named above and:

* Tennessee basketball coach Pat Summitt

* Former Supreme Court justice John Paul Stevens

* Author Toni Morrison.

* Juliette Gordon Low, founder of the Girl Scouts.

* Shimon Peres, president of Israel will also receive the award, though will attend a separate ceremony later this year.

* John Doar, who handled civil rights cases as assistant attorney general in the 1960s.

* William Foege, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who helped lead the effort to eradicate smallpox.

* Gordon Hirabayashi, who fought the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II.

* Jan Karski, a resistance fighter against the Nazi occupation of Poland during World War II.

* Dolores Huerta, co-founder of the National Farmworkers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers of America.

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is not the same thing as the Medal of Honor. First created by Harry S. Truman to reward World War II-connected activities however after a number of generations was modified by JFK via Executive Order to include “any person who has made an especially meritorious contribution to (1) the security or national interests of the United States, or (2) world peace, or (3) cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.” Today the recipients of the reward remain the sole discretion of the current President and those who receive it do so based on the President's own reasons.

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1 comments on Bob Dylan receives 2012 Medal of Freedom

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By Barbara MacDonald on May 30, 2012 at 10:45 am

Well deserved...the words in this song are very much a reflection of where we were when he wrote this....a favorite song of his....

Come gather 'round peopleWherever you roamAnd admit that the watersAround you have grownAnd accept it that soonYou'll be drenched to the boneIf your time to youIs worth savin'Then you better start swimmin'Or you'll sink like a stoneFor the times they are a-changin'.Come writers and criticsWho prophesize with your penAnd keep your eyes wideThe chance won't come againAnd don't speak too soonFor the wheel's still in spinAnd there's no tellin' whoThat it's namin'For the loser nowWill be later to winFor the times they are a-changin'.Come senators, congressmenPlease heed the callDon't stand in the doorwayDon't block up the hallFor he that gets hurtWill be he who has stalledThere's a battle outsideAnd it is ragin'It'll soon shake your windowsAnd rattle your wallsFor the times they are a-changin'.Come mothers and fathersThroughout the landAnd don't criticizeWhat you can't understandYour sons and your daughtersAre beyond your commandYour old road isRapidly agin'Please get out of the new oneIf you can't lend your handFor the times they are a-changin'.The line it is drawnThe curse it is castThe slow one nowWill later be fastAs the present nowWill later be pastThe order isRapidly fadin'And the first one nowWill later be lastFor the times they are a-changin'.

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