Ronald Reagan: Remembering the champion of religious liberty on his birthday
“Without God,” he said, “there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure.” For this reason, Reagan rebutted attacks on religious values as attempts to “abrogate the original terms of American democracy.”
He supported both judicial and legislative action to restore prayer and other religious activity to public schools, including the 1984 Equal Access Act. He left a federal judiciary populated with Reagan judges who made key rulings in favor of religious freedom. His Justice Department accelerated the careers of countless champions of religious liberty and freedom.
As President, Reagan saw religious freedom as crucial to the moral stability necessary for a society to afford less government and enjoy more political and economic freedom.
“We establish no religion in this country, nor will we ever,” Reagan stated in 1984. “But those who believe must be free to speak of and act on their belief, to apply moral teaching to public questions.”
Today, powerful forces in culture and government are questioning the value of religious liberty. Yet the ideological heirs of Ronald Reagan are battling back in courts, state legislatures, and the U.S. Congress.
Happy 105th Birthday Ronald Reagan.
“I believe with all my heart that standing up for America means standing up for the God who has so blessed our land. We need God’s help to guide our nation through stormy seas. But we can’t expect Him to protect America in a crisis if we just leave Him over on the shelf in our day-to-day living.” - Ronald Reagan
I didn’t agree with every position of his … but often when I didn’t … I later found I’d learned something from his clearly defining HIS position … even if I STILL didn’t completely agree with him.
I was perhaps most stunned as a “young” person in my late 20s, that when he was in CHARGE of the Executive Branch of the Government … he actually worked toward making government SMALLER. Giving away some of HIS power … as I then saw it.
THAT was something new to me (fresh as I was from a public state college that had as part of its unofficial culture the idea that government DID things and was the first place to seek a solution to anything).
That he was as successful as he was, never having both houses of Congress as his allies in his eight years … the last two with Democrats holding both the House and the Senate, is somewhat amazing.
PLUS … I liked his movies. And him in them.
I always expected the Democrats to make use of his photos in a Nazi uniform at some point … (in Desperate Journey, 1942 with Errol Flynn … Reagan played a US prisoner who donned the Nazi togs to escape them). They never did.
There was no YouTube then so this clip would have been harder to get to rebut the photo.
youtube.com/watch?v=raPNZc5ehYM < Reagan with some hilarious doubletalk confuses the Nazi commander (played by Raymond Massey). < How Reagan came to GET that Nazi uniform might have ruined the strategy of showing him in it.
But per humor … I always expected it to be used. Some people my age used to call him a Nazi reflexively. I guess their politics were other than his.
Happy Birthday. February was a good month for Presidents. Any February birthdays among this election’s hopefiuls?