The attempt by Leftists
to defame Ronald Reagan has been blunted by the CBS decision to ship its
garbage off to Showtime, but the counterattack of conservatives and other
normal people should not stop with Dunkirk but should instead be a D-Day
against the Leftism of today.
The legacy of Ronald Reagan surpasses any president in modern history. He
confronted one of the most evil regimes in human history -- Leftist thugs
who murdered more people than even the Leftist thugs of Nazism -- and, ignoring
everyone and everything except his own conscience and will, Ronald Reagan
toppled that evil empire.
Because of him, we do not wake up each day wondering if a new challenge from
the Kremlin may bring the world to the brink of thermonuclear suicide.
Because of him, the peoples of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Hungary,
Rumania, Bulgaria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic live in free and independent
nations. Because of him, the German people can control their own destiny.
Because of him, the threat of world enslavement by totalitarians has largely
Leftists grudgingly acknowledge that this great victory was similar to the
Allied victory over the Axis in the Second World War or the Union victory
over the South in the Civil War. That grossly understates what President
Reagan accomplished. Ronald Reagan was a greater president than Franklin
Roosevelt or Abraham Lincoln.
Each of these three presidents confronted an undeniable evil, and each ultimately
defeated that evil. But the similarities end there. FDR and Lincoln
were penultimate politicos, who would have prevented war even if it meant
that evil would live. Reagan was committing to defeating evil, and
because of his willingness to fight that evil, the world was spared the physical
destruction of entire nations and the decimation of entire peoples.
America paid a price for the moral ambivalence of FDR and Lincoln. Roosevelt
befriended the monstrous regime of Stalin in order to defeat the equally
monstrous and more dangerous regime of Hitler. Lincoln suspended constitutional
rights on a massive scale and largely destroyed the sovereignty of state
governments to win the Civil War.
Presidents of the Cold War before Ronald Reagan left tens of thousands of
American soldiers buried in Korea and Vietnam, without bringing the world
any closer to triumph over evil. Reagan alone was able to articulate perfectly
the moral hollowness of totalitarian Leftism.
As a consequence, the world that Reagan left us is much better than the world
that Roosevelt left us, which had the Red Army at the Elbe River and half
of the Korean peninsula occupied by a ghastly regime. And as a consequence
of Ronald Reagan’s clear moral voice, he did not leave America, as Lincoln
did, with the residual evil of a reduced form of black slavery.
Lincoln, like Roosevelt, was a politician first and a moral leader second.
His campaign in 1860 was not an unflinching repudiation of slavery as evil,
but more an effort to move the nation toward a position of opposition to
slavery. As a result, the moral blight that human slavery represented
was treated with rhetorical reservation. It took a century for the
wrong of legal racism to end in America.
Roosevelt’s campaign in 1940, although tilted against Nazi Germany, was like
Lincoln’s campaign eighty years earlier, a moral equivocation. Here
was a man with more political capital than any president in history, commanding
by far the greatest economy in human history, and FDR could not use that
power to define America’s purpose as ending Nazism. Why does anyone
think this man was either great or good?
The bloodless victory by Reagan is better in every way than the Civil War
of Lincoln or the stumbling entry into world war by FDR. There is only
one real precedent in modern American history: the dismantling of Jim Crow
by Martin Luther King.
Conservatives opposed Martin Luther King Day because of our problems with
some of his politics. Compared with modern “civil rights leaders” is there
any question that Dr. King is a vastly superior example of a liberal with
Conservatives and other normal people should begin immediately to ask for
a Ronald Reagan Day, and this should specifically note that like Dr. King,
President Reagan not only did great things but he did them with nobility.
Resolutions establishing Ronald Reagan Day should explicitly make the connection
to the methods and the moral purpose of Dr. King.
Our campaign should begin with state governments where conservative Republicans
dominate. We may well wish, when state law allows, for a popular vote
on the issue. Beyond all else, we must push and push and push, until
the ugly hatred that is Leftism either shows its snarling face or sulks back
into its den.
Bruce Walker's articles can be found at the Conservative Truth.