More on Ronald Reagan and his legacy. KGS
Warner Todd Huston: We are still living in Ronald Reagan’s era, despite the constant refrains from Democrats and the left that Reaganism is long dead. As we observe his 100th birthday, it is also beneficial to point out that in many ways Reagan is the father of the Tea Party Movement. It was his great success, his sunny optimism that gave the Tea Partiers the grounding and confidence that they could, indeed, make a difference.
Like many politically active people today, Ronald Reagan is my favorite president in my lifetime. For me, he was also the first president for whom I could vote and I did so with glee.
In fact, if it weren’t for Ronald Reagan I may well have entered my voting age with too much cynicism to overcome in order to make me feel invested in the system. I’d posit that this is true for most Tea Party patriots older than 40, too. I would also argue that the Reagan effect is responsible for giving Tea Partiers the feeling that they could affect government like Reagan did and that without Reagan there’d be no Tea Party movement at all.
You see as a teen growing up in the 1970s cynicism about America is about all one could muster. As kids we lived through the end of the Vietnam War, saw the Fall of Saigon, endured Watergate, the end of the Nixon presidency, saw the media turn his successor into a pratfalling, buffoon, suffered under the “malaise” of Jimmy Carter and ended the era humiliated as a bunch of Islamic lunatics took Americans hostage for 444 days.
In the meantime, all our entertainment on TV, at the Movies, in our music we were basically told how bad America was. Our government was sending spies to kill people on movies and TV, riots and protests abounded in our recent memory, America was racist, violent, nasty, our teachers were completely sold out to the far left and reinforced the meme that America was evil in our high schools and colleges. It was a pretty dismal America in which we lived.