By Gary P Jackson
Today we celebrate Ronald Reagan’s 101st birthday. Reagan was our great inspiration during some tough times. His spirit and vision is what lifted America out of the dark days of the Carter era. He remains our great inspiration to this day.
Sarah Palin offers her tribute to Renaldus Magnus:
America remembers our beloved 40th president today! In honor of President Reagan’s 101st birthday, American’s For Prosperity put together this great video reminding us of the time-tested truths Reagan stood for.
Two different visions for America. President Reagan launched his effort to return America to greatness with simple but profound words during his first inaugural speech, “In the present times Government is not the solution to our problems. Government is the problem.”
From there he put words into action passing historic tax cuts, cutting back on onerous government regulations and the results of the President’s free market policies: Growth, Prosperity, and Hope.
Happy Birthday President Reagan – we miss you! Find out more at
Last year at this time, I had the honor of speaking at the Young America’s Foundation’s Reagan Centennial dinner at the Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara. You can watch or read the speech here; it was an homage to Reagan’s famous “Time for Choosing” and a discussion of the state of our nation today.
Sarah Palin at the Reagan Ranch in Santa Barbara, CA
During the Illinois leg of the One Nation Tour, we got to visit Reagan’s hometown of Dixon, as well as his alma mater, Eureka College. It was a very moving experience, which I wrote about here, here and here.
As I wrote in an op-ed last year on Reagan’s centennial:
I had the privilege of coming of age during the era of Ronald Reagan. I like to think of him as America’s lifeguard. As a teenager, Ronald Reagan saved 77 lives as a lifeguard on the Rock River, which ran through his hometown of Dixon, Ill. The day he was inaugurated in 1981, a local radio announcer famously declared, “The Rock River flows for you tonight, Mr. President.”
The image of the lifeguard seems to represent what Reagan was to America and to the freedom-loving people of the world. He lifted our country up at a time when we were in the depths of economic, cultural and spiritual malaise. We were told that we must accept that the era of American greatness was over; but with his optimism and common sense, President Reagan held up a mirror to the American soul to remind us of our exceptionalism.
We are all so grateful for his courage and leadership; and like President Reagan, we believe that our best days are yet to come because “there will always be a bright dawn ahead” for America.
~ Sarah Palin
The Heritage Foundation offers up their 10 most inspiring Reagan quotes as well as a video tribute from Reagan’s 100th birthday tribute:
Of the four wars in my lifetime, none came about because the U.S. was too strong.
Don’t be afraid to see what you see.
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
I know in my heart that man is good. That what is right will always eventually triumph. And there’s purpose and worth to each and every life.
Let us be sure that those who come after will say of us in our time, that in our time we did everything that could be done. We finished the race; we kept them free; we kept the faith.
No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we’ll ever see on this earth!
There are no easy answers’ but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right.
We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.
Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today’s world do not have.
Without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure.
To me, Ronald Reagan has always represented America the way it should be. I was privileged to cast my first vote as a young man for Reagan. It’s still the vote I’m most proud of.
Reagan had a way of making you feel things were going to get better, even though the times were tough. His eternal optimism kept us going. He was such a great leader that folks got behind him and refused to be defeated. He reminded us what America was all about.
I also remember Ronald Reagan for his wonderful sense of humor, which he often used to his advantage, whether it be talking about America’s enemies, or his political opponents. He was able to disarm his detractors without being mean and hateful. This great sense of humor is yet another reason why Reagan is one of our most beloved presidents.
A couple of years back I wrote about Reagan’s humor and posted some videos, including this one:
You can see more video here, including the Dean Martin Roast of Reagan, with a hilarious bit by Don Rickles, as well as Reagan roasting George Burns. There’s also a funny clip from Ronnie on the Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour
Ronald Reagan was very much like a father figure to many of us. A wise and steady man who led America back from the abyss. We all felt better knowing Reagan was our president. We worried less and accomplished more during his presidency because we knew he had it covered. It really did feel like morning in America under his watch.
We remember Reagan so fondly because he is one of a kind. A true leader of the sort we will likely never see again. As we celebrate Reagan’s life, may we always honor his principles.
This video can never be watched enough. In twenty-nine minutes and thirty-three seconds you get the very essence of future president Ronald Reagan, and the reason that, to this day, he is the gold standard of what we wish for in our leaders:
Happy Birthday Mr. President.