The life of Ronald Reagan has a lot to teach young people today. In an increasingly cynical America, Reagan’s monumental achievements offer hope that it is possible for one individual to make a real difference in reclaiming the things that have made America great — and good.
In a world where people are bound together by “tweets,” “snaps,” and “vines” and the future of human-to-human connection is in doubt, young people can learn a lot from the Great Communicator. And at a time when youngsters need to be reminded of a true heroes, the story of Ronald Reagan and his journey to the White House illustrate a path for success that can be emulated by just about anyone. All you need is determination and a strong work ethic. Reagan had both, as well as a quick wit, an optimistic charm, and a never-give-up attitude.
It takes monumental strength to run for president a second time after already running and losing once. But Reagan had the vision and the motivation. He knew our country was not going in the right direction, and he formulated a plan to inspire the American public to dig deeper and work harder to re-create an environment of individual success, pride, and responsibility. Together as a nation, we Americans could tackle the toughest of problems — and advance freedom and the pursuit of happiness not only at home but also for men and women around the world.
America needs big dreamers. And we have always found them when our country needed them most — George Washington when we needed guidance during the infancy of a new American nation, Abraham Lincoln, when the Union was fatally divided, and Ronald Reagan, when we needed to have our spirits lifted, our economy boosted, and our freedom ensured. And just as with Washington and Lincoln, it was the the simple parts of Reagan’s life’s story that prepared him to be the leader that a nation and a world required.
Ronald Reagan never shied away from work and challenges. He had big dreams and ambitions as a young man. He struggled to succeed as an actor, learned to ride in the Army Cavalry Reserve, and eventually owned a ranch of his own. Reagan learned from his mother to have an open heart and a helping hand for those less fortunate. And he used his athletic skills to keep himself busy as a lifeguard, a football player at Eureka College, and then as a radio announcer calling baseball. He never stopped trying to better himself. It’s said that the actor Ronald Reagan could often be seen backstage reading books. He became known as “the Great Communicator” by sharpening his skills in debate club and giving speeches as president of the Screen Actors Guild.