It was 25 years ago today that the history of the United States and the world changed forever. It would have been remembered as an historic day even without the swearing in of the 40th President of the United States. The American Hostages were being released after 444 days of captivity in Iran. Of course no one would realize, or appreciate at the time, that the Iran hostage crisis was just the beginning of the world wide war against America by Islamofascists.
But the long-term impact of Ronald Reagan’s inauguration that day has been felt by millions around the world who were freed from Communist oppression because of his commitment and vision. Here in the United States, Reagan brought the country back from the days of Carter’s malaise to a new level of economic productivity and patriotism. As I told an ABC Radio reporter while I stood in line at the Capitol to pay my respects upon his passing in June 2004, as long as I live Ronald Reagan will be the person I will consider as “my President.”
I found this decent column in the LA Times marking the 25th Anniversary of Reagan’s inauguration.
What Reagan Knew – Richard Reeves, LATimes.com
TWENTY-FIVE YEARS ago today, on Jan. 20, 1981, Ronald Reagan was sworn in as the 40th president of the United States. The former governor of California faced west, away from the front of the Capitol, and gave a most extraordinary inaugural address.
He touched on four simple themes, the ones he had been repeating for years, first as spokesman for the General Electric Co., then as governor of California and as the post-Goldwater icon of the conservative wing of the Republican Party: reducing taxes and budget deficits and thus reducing the power and size of the government; rebuilding the American military; confronting communism around the world; and renewing American pride and patriotism.
Reagan, a stubborn and determined old man not greatly interested in learning anything new, instinctively understood the presidency in important ways that were derided and mocked by many of his contemporaries. He knew the job was not managing the government, it was leading the nation. He knew words could be more important than deeds — and he was not ashamed of that. He knew the presidency was about trust and judgment, the way the man at the top handled the two or three big ones that came his way, usually unexpectedly. No one remembers Abraham Lincoln’s agricultural policy.
He was politically alone those last two years. Congress and the press treated him as a fool or a crook. Conservatives abandoned him, consigning him to Lenin’s category of “useful idiots.” But he knew one big thing, and always had: Communism would fall of its own weight and contradictions. And he had found the key to victory in the Cold War: a Soviet leader who also understood that old-fashioned communism was collapsing.
The official notes of the Reagan/Mikhail S. Gorbachev meetings, finally released in this century, show convincingly that Reagan, trying to save his ideology and his presidency, prevailed over Gorbachev, the Russian trying to save his ideology and his country.
There was no one at his inauguration in January 1981 who would have predicted that within 10 years the Soviet Union would be dissolved and Russia would begin applying for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Well, maybe Ronald Reagan did. But no one took him seriously — then.
As a foot soldier of the Reagan Revolution, I salute my Commander-In-Chief on this day. God Bless Ronald Reagan.