A few offerings about Ronald Reagan

U.S. President Ronald Reagan's Oval Office add...
Addressing the nation after the Challenger tragedy (Image via Wikipedia)

With the passing of 100 years since his birthdate, Ronald Reagan has been in the news a lot, lately.  The current political climate, in which politicians on both sides of the aisle wouldn’t mind borrowing a little of the luster that has accumulated upon his memory, has made his legacy all the more relevant.  In particular, whether you liked him or disliked him, you’d be hard pressed not to agree with the assessment that he was a real leader. And as I’ve written about frequently (inspired by Dr. Douglas Winnail’s observations), we’re living in a time where there is a real leadership crisis.

I won’t add to the abundance of commentaries out there, myself — there are too many who can speak more knowledgeably of the man and of what he represents to us today.  I just thought I would pass on two links for those who may be interested, both of which go to articles I enjoyed concerning the man.

Additionally, for those who remember some of his speeches and would like to hear them again, you might consider the Reagan Foundation’s YouTube channel.

In particular, here is a video of what is arguably one of his most famous speeches (ranked in some places as one of the top ten American speeches of all time): His televised comments after the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.  While of little political consequence, perhaps, it is one of my favorites (and was, if I recall correctly, written by Ms. Noonan).

7 thoughts on “A few offerings about Ronald Reagan

  1. There is also a new movie out on DVD called Ronald Regan an American Journey. We started watching it last night but opted to finish tonight and watch the “Go Packer” beat Pittsburg. I know … I’m from Ohio so I probably should have rooted for a closer team but……
    Anyway, the movie so far is awesome and filled with many of his speeches.

  2. Interesting that a lot of people at the time didn’t think a lot of luster would accumulate on his memory, and I’ll bet they’d like to ignore their mistake at the moment.

    As a certain Mr. Cochrain (the inventor of warp drive on Star Trek’s fictional Earth of the future) said, “Don’t try to be a great man. Just be a man – and let history make its own judgments.” 😀

  3. Steve

    I remember the late ’70s. We had double digit inflation and double digit unemployment. Both at the same time. The U.S. was being rolled back on the world stage, as one nation after another fell under Soviet influence. Then we had the Iranian hostage crisis. Things became so bad that President Carter had to go on national TV and warn our country about a “national malaise”.

    That’s when Ronald Reagan came along. Making soaring speeches about America’s need to reassert itself, and to get moving again. And it wasn’t just a bunch of hot air. He meant it. When he took office, he followed up. America did indeed reassert itself.

    Reagan was indeed a true leader. Nobody is perfect, but he certainly came along at the right time.

  4. Steve

    I also remember the 1980 Winter Olympics. The U.S. defeated the Soviet Union in hockey, something that was considered impossible. Americans attending the match started chanting, “USA! USA! USA!”

    That was very shocking at the time. Americans actually showing national pride? Nobody could believe it. Newspapers everywhere commented on it.

    I can’t tell you that Reagan had something to do with it. It was the middle of the campaign season, and it plugged right into the speeches that he was making. But I really don’t know. What I do know? The mood in the country had definitely turned.

    Sorry for the long comments. I’m done.

  5. Gail Abdow

    I had forgotten hearing Mr. Reagan give this speech. He was a wonderful, great man – he wasn’t our leader, but I could only wish we had a leader so personable, genuine, caring and down-to-earth. Difficult qualities to find in today’s leaders.

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