Today, I write remembering one of my greatest heroes, who lived and influenced my perspective of the world when I was young. Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States (1981–1989), was born this day in 1911. He turned this country around, after almost two decades of turmoil, and ended the Cold War.
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same. ~Ronald Reagan
I grew up in a world in which America had just lost the Vietnam War. There was the Water Gate scandal. We had domestic terrorism from groups like the Weathermen Underground. I remember the long lines to get gasoline from two Oil Crises, and Pennsylvania implementing fuel rationing. I watched the Iran Hostage Crisis play out daily on the evening news, and American’s failed attempt at rescue. I grew up under the threat of Global Thermonuclear War and Mutual Assured Destruction. I was growing up believing that America’s best days were behind her, and it was only a matter of time before the Free World fell to the iron fist of Soviet domination.
Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them. ~Ronald Reagan
Barack Obama uses the slogan “Change You Can Believe In,” as a marketing tool. Ronald Reagan was change you could believe in. Barack Obama places the word “HOPE” on a poster of himself. Reagan created hope, not just in words, but in action. Reagan’s strength and character transformed America. He not only raised America out of its downward spiral, he united the country in a way I have not seen since.
The American dream is not that every man must be level with every other man. The American dream is that every man must be free to become whatever God intends he should become. ~Ronald Reagan
Barack Obama’s 2012 reelection win was described by his supporters as a landslide victory. Obama won his reelection with only 26 states and 51.1% of the popular vote. This nation could not be any more divided than it is today. Thanks to an ability to truly reach across the aisle, gaining the support of “Reagan Democrats,” Ronald Reagan won his 1984 reelection with 49 states and almost 59% of the popular vote. While today, Reagan is the patron saint of the Conservative Movement, in his time he defied “liberal” or “conservative” labels.
The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much. ~Ronald Reagan
Some of Ronald Reagan’s greatest accomplishments include:
- Ending the Cold War,
- Across the board tax cuts,
- Rebuilding of the Armed Forces,
- Nuclear weapons cuts,
- Simplifying the tax code.
By the end of Reagan’s years in office America was stronger, both economically and militarily, and the world was safer, caused both by shrinking numbers of nuclear weapons and the fall of the Soviet Union. Reagan was a president who personified Hope and Change.
There are no easy answers’ but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right. ~Ronald Reagan
Reagan gave hope to a 10 year old boy, with his strong character and grandfatherly smile. He helped to shape a child’s view of the world, and helped to instill the values of family, thrift, patriotism, and hard work. I am truly grateful for all that he did for our country, and how his example shaped my life.
Happy Birthday, Mr. President. Your leadership is missed.