Monday, February 19, 2007

Just another President's Day, unless you remember this one

President's Day, 2007. Just another day, another reason for furniture stores to offer 30% off, no payments until 2008 and no interest, to qualified buyers.

Twasn't always this way, they tell me. I remember this one President, a great man who loved this great land, America, and believed in her greatness. But what I remember more about this great man was his genuine belief in the greatness of Americans. Each of us, the great and the small, the rich and the poor, and everyone in between. No one didn't matter to this great man, this beloved President, this man who elevated everyone with whom he encountered.

For, I believe that despite his high office, and his earlier, famous career, this man was an "Everyman". His infectious smile disarmed everyone whom he met, including the Soviets.

And there was much talk, about how could America get around a Constitutional Amendment, so that this man could just stay Four More Years.... Like many, I'd have preferred even more.
This jolly leader was exactly what my country needed, when he came along; our nation was mired in something called "Stagflation". Interest rates were around 18%, and that was considered low~
and inflation was a hellacious 9.75%. Fifty four Americans were being held hostage by a new and mysterious group led by an "Ayatollah". And mostly, people were tired. People were tired of just living in a land fresh from a long, badly fought war, they were embarrassed by a peanut farmer President who was attacked by a bunny rabbit, WHILE IN A ROWBOAT IN A RIVER, and there was a general malaise in simply getting up in the morning.

Then we elected him. My President. My hero. The guy who, only minutes after taking the oath of his high office, announced that the 54 hostages were being released in Tehran, and that they would be on American soil within a matter of days. His sunny disposition confounded his political enemies, who literally had no "offense" to thwart him with. And in his debate with his political opponant in 1984, he used his soft sense of humor to completely undo him, citing his opponent's (young) age and inexperience.

It is to this great man I owe my political ideology today, and I couldn't thank him enough for that gift.

His death two-and-one-half years ago, caused me to weep for a week, along with a grateful nation, as if we were saying goodbye to a loving grandfather, or to a great great leader of our beloved land.

And it is of this great American President, I celebrate President's Day, 2007.

1 comment:

Very Rev. Fr. Gregori said...

How right you are. Reagan was a man who meant what he said and said what he meant. He never waverd in his convictions. It is sad, but most people, especially those who run for public office, don't seem to have any core convictions any more. They just bend in what ever direction the political wind blows and will say and do whatever they feel it takes to get elected.