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Born in Wichita, Kansas, in 1934, Jim Lehrer attended Victoria College. In 1956, he received a Bachelor's journalism degree from the University of Missouri before joining the Marine Corps, where[…]

Who do you blame?

Question: What is your question? 

Jim Lehrer: When something goes wrong, who do you blame automatically? Do you ever feel you’re responsible for your own mistakes?

The most important question I would ask any individual would be, Do you think you’re important? Do you see yourself as an individual? Do you see yourself as a member of a pressure group? As a member of a political party? As a member of a church, of a faith?

Do you see yourself in family terms, as a parent, a child, an uncle, a lover in personal terms? How do you see yourself?

Do you see yourself as an instrument of good? Do you feel like you’re a person that’s always on the defense – that people are out to get you? Or are you on the offense? You’re active, making your own world, doing your own things. Do you feel that there are certain things that others owe you? Family may owe you? A guy next door may owe you? The government may owe you? Do you feel there are things that you owe others?

Recorded: July 4, 2007.