The Corner

Reagan as Pericles

Reader Joel Leggett writes:

Although I was not old enough to vote for Reagan, my parents followed his administration very closely and I, consequently, heard many of his speeches. From his speeches I gained a greater appreciation of, and interest in, the ideas and principles of our founding fathers and the Constitution. So much so that years later while I was reading Donald Kagan’s Pericles of Athens and the Birth of Democracy I was struck by the following statement:

“Every leader who makes any impression at all acts as an educator for good or ill, knowingly or not. His people pay attention to his words and deeds as to few others, and he contributes to their vision of the world, their nation and themselves, and the relations among them.”

No better statement could be made of the impact that Reagan had on our nation in general and my generation specifically. he reintroduced us to the principles upon which our nation, and its greatness, was based. If the aforementioned quote was an accurate description of the impact of Pericles on Athenian society it is certainly true of President Reagan’s impact on America.

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