The Profiles in Courage Award 1993.

The Kennedy Society has decided to award Federal President Richard von Weizsächer with John F. Kennedy's book "Profiles in Courage" for the year 1993 for the following reasons: Reigning mayor of Berlin for many years and later Federal President Richard von Weizsäcker has in - a now united - Germany shown courage to make clear statements regarding human worth and human rights and shown courage to stand firm for his statements.
In Stuttgart in 1976 he stated: "Man is unambiguous, unique, who has been called by God. This makes him a person, whose value is sacrosanct. It belongs to him notwithstanding success or failure and is untouchable by the judgement of others…" (Harald Steffahn: Richard von Weizsächer, 1991.) In the Federal Diet in Bonn on 8 May 1985 he stated: "May 8 is the day of liberation. It has released us from the misanthrope system: The Nazi tyranny. " (Richard von Weizsächer: "Von Deutschland aus, Reden…." 1985.) In former Leningrad in July 1987 he stated: "We will not forget that for nine hundred days Leningrad was starved out, bombed and shelled… Today we have with awe and grief remembered the thousands of nameless victims" (Harald Steffahn: "Richard von Wiezsäcker", 1991). In Zimbabwe in 1988 he stated: "Apartheid is a fundamental injustice. It is against the value of man. It destroys the constitution that all societies need to bring peace to their country..." (Harald Steffahn: "Richard von Weizsäcker", 1991). For strangers he has also courageously stated: "Trying to unite unity with plurality is the test of federalism and this is the future of Europe... The constitution in article 1 cannot be misinterpreted; it states the value of a stranger: not worse or nothing but a sacrosanct human being which the state is committed to protect... Racial and anti-Semitic attacks revolt us. Anyone who pretends to use such resort of force in the interest of Germany, abuses the name of our nation. Germany is neither slogans nor abuse to seek self affirmation against weaker humans or to work off own fury and fear against defencelessness... we are all urged to protect our just and human democracy. On when citizens show civil courage they also back our police. Or shall we once again witness or turn tails on the hunt of helpless people?" (Speech given the German Unity Day on 3 October 1992 in Schwerin.)
He did also appreciate Willy Brandt's courage by saying: "With sound scepticism against sectarianism and obstinacy he professed to the evolution of ideas. He became a seldom pragmatic visionary … To let entrusted power fall into decay is only a little better than abuse... We will endeavour to prevent coldness again, internally and externally... He who allows injustice, prepares for the next injustice." (Farewell speech at Willy Brandt's funeral 17 October 1992 in Berlin.)