Ronald Reagan’s “1986” Independence Day Speech

Photo taken from:  www.glogster.com
Photo taken from: http://www.glogster.com

Each year I’m challenged to find a famous Independence Day speech.  And each year I’m surprised by my findings.

This years post is of Ronald Reagan’s speech given July 4, 1986.

For the past couple of days I have read so many unpatriotic comments about Americans.  But the funny thing about those comments . . . they were made by Americans. Have we lost the American dream?  Our we willing to give up the freedoms that was paid for with blood of fellow dead Americans?  Or our we so grief stricken because of social differences that we can no longer forge courage to press forwards to embrace our nations independence as a blessing of God?

For the sake of our country let us reflect upon the patriotic words spoken by our 40th President, Ronald Reagan.  Let us come together in unity today and find hope for a nation that seemingly have lost its way.  Let us not find fault with Ronald Reagan’s speech but let us hear a message of hope:

My fellow Americans:

In a few moments the celebration will begin here in New York Harbor. It’s going to be quite a show. I was just looking over the preparations and thinking about a saying that we had back in Hollywood about never doing a scene with kids or animals because they’d steal the scene every time. So, you can rest assured I wouldn’t even think about trying to compete with a fireworks display, especially on the Fourth of July.

My remarks tonight will be brief, but it’s worth remembering that all the celebration of this day is rooted in history. It’s recorded that shortly after the Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia celebrations took place throughout the land, and many of the former Colonists — they were just starting to call themselves Americans — set off cannons and marched in fife and drum parades.

What a contrast with the sober scene that had taken place a short time earlier in Independence Hall. Fifty-six men came forward to sign the parchment. It was noted at the time that they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honors. And that was more than rhetoric; each of those men knew the penalty for high treason to the Crown. “We must all hang together,” Benjamin Franklin said, “or, assuredly, we will all hang separately.” And John Hancock, it is said, wrote his signature in large script so King George could see it without his spectacles. They were brave. They stayed brave through all the bloodshed of the coming years. Their courage created a nation built on a universal claim to human dignity, on the proposition that every man, woman, and child had a right to a future of freedom.

For just a moment, let us listen to the words again: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” Last night when we rededicated Miss Liberty and relit her torch, we reflected on all the millions who came here in search of the dream of freedom inaugurated in Independence Hall. We reflected, too, on their courage in coming great distances and settling in a foreign land and then passing on to their children and their children’s children the hope symbolized in this statue here just behind us: the hope that is America. It is a hope that someday every people and every nation of the world will know the blessings of liberty.

And it’s the hope of millions all around the world. In the last few years, I’ve spoken at Westminster to the mother of Parliaments; at Versailles, where French kings and world leaders have made war and peace. I’ve been to the Vatican in Rome, the Imperial Palace in Japan, and the ancient city of Beijing. I’ve seen the beaches of Normandy and stood again with those boys of Pointe du Hoc, who long ago scaled the heights, and with, at that time, Lisa Zanatta Henn, who was at Omaha Beach for the father she loved, the father who had once dreamed of seeing again the place where he and so many brave others had landed on D-day. But he had died before he could make that trip, and she made it for him. “And, Dad,” she had said, “I’ll always be proud.”

And I’ve seen the successors to these brave men, the young Americans in uniform all over the world, young Americans like you here tonight who man the mighty U.S.S. Kennedy and the Iowa and other ships of the line. I can assure you, you out there who are listening, that these young are like their fathers and their grandfathers, just as willing, just as brave. And we can be just as proud. But our prayer tonight is that the call for their courage will never come. And that it’s important for us, too, to be brave; not so much the bravery of the battlefield, I mean the bravery of brotherhood.

All through our history, our Presidents and leaders have spoken of national unity and warned us that the real obstacle to moving forward the boundaries of freedom, the only permanent danger to the hope that is America, comes from within. It’s easy enough to dismiss this as a kind of familiar exhortation. Yet the truth is that even two of our greatest Founding Fathers, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, once learned this lesson late in life. They’d worked so closely together in Philadelphia for independence. But once that was gained and a government was formed, something called partisan politics began to get in the way. After a bitter and divisive campaign, Jefferson defeated Adams for the Presidency in 1800. And the night before Jefferson’s inauguration, Adams slipped away to Boston, disappointed, brokenhearted, and bitter.

For years their estrangement lasted. But then when both had retired, Jefferson at 68 to Monticello and Adams at 76 to Quincy, they began through their letters to speak again to each other. Letters that discussed almost every conceivable subject: gardening, horseback riding, even sneezing as a cure for hiccups; but other subjects as well: the loss of loved ones, the mystery of grief and sorrow, the importance of religion, and of course the last thoughts, the final hopes of two old men, two great patriarchs, for the country that they had helped to found and loved so deeply. “It carries me back,” Jefferson wrote about correspondence with his cosigner of the Declaration of Independence, “to the times when, beset with difficulties and dangers, we were fellow laborers in the same cause, struggling for what is most valuable to man, his right to self-government. Laboring always at the same oar, with some wave ever ahead threatening to overwhelm us and yet passing harmless . . . we rowed through the storm with heart and hand . . . .” It was their last gift to us, this lesson in brotherhood, in tolerance for each other, this insight into America’s strength as a nation. And when both died on the same day within hours of each other, that date was July 4th, 50 years exactly after that first gift to us, the Declaration of Independence.

My fellow Americans, it falls to us to keep faith with them and all the great Americans of our past. Believe me, if there’s one impression I carry with me after the privilege of holding for 5\1/2\ years the office held by Adams and Jefferson and Lincoln, it is this: that the things that unite us — America’s past of which we’re so proud, our hopes and aspirations for the future of the world and this much-loved country — these things far outweigh what little divides us. And so tonight we reaffirm that Jew and gentile, we are one nation under God; that black and white, we are one nation indivisible; that Republican and Democrat, we are all Americans. Tonight, with heart and hand, through whatever trial and travail, we pledge ourselves to each other and to the cause of human freedom, the cause that has given light to this land and hope to the world.

My fellow Americans, we’re known around the world as a confident and a happy people. Tonight there’s much to celebrate and many blessings to be grateful for. So while it’s good to talk about serious things, it’s just as important and just as American to have some fun. Now, let’s have some fun — let the celebration begin!


 

Reagan’s speech was taken from:  http://freedomoutpost.com/2012/07/reagans-independence-day-speech-july-4-1986/

 

The Prayers of Black Women: A Kiss from Heaven

The Prayers of Black Women: A Kiss from Heaven.

Inspirational Fridays: Lack of Kindness Can Come With A Cost . . .

Okay!  I am a day late posting my message for Inspirational Friday’s but here it is!  I found this story and it was untitled so I gave it a title today.  I felt it was like a beautiful baby wanting to be affirmed by words of acceptance.  It packs a powerful message about being blessed regardless of bad attitudes.

A classic ice cream sundae, complete with a ch...
A classic ice cream sundae, complete with a cherry on top (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is from an old story, back in the ’30s, in the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less. A 10 year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in front of him.

“How much is an ice cream sundae?” the little boy asked.

“Fifty cents,” replied the waitress.

The little boy pulled his hand out of his pocket and studied the coins he had. “Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?” he inquired.

By now, more people were waiting for a table and the waitress was growing very impatient. “Thirty-five cents,” she brusquely replied.

The little boy again counted his coins. “I’ll have the plain ice cream,” he said.

coins
The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the cashier and left. When the waitress came back, she began to cry. As she wiped down the table, there placed neatly beside the empty dish were two nickels and five pennies. You see, he couldn’t have the sundae because he had to have enough money to leave her a tip.

Read more: http://www.motivationalwellbeing.com/motivational-stories.html#ixzz2cEq4f8WL

The Prayers of Black Women: Balancing Pain with Pleasure

Photo Taken From: https://twitter.com/AuthorESkoglund
Photo Taken From: https://twitter.com/AuthorESkoglund

A few years after my mother died, I remembered more vividly the times in childhood when she had made gloomy days seem cheerful.  When something special to do inside, such as new paper dolls or a coloring book.  Later, when I was in school, I always knew that on a rainy day I would come home to the smell of cookies baking in the oven . . .

I remembered, too, that in my childhood my mother had always balanced grief with comfort, pain with joy . . . To compensate for my childhood illnesses, for example, she used to read me stories which made the afternoon fly, or she would show me how to knit doll clothes out of the scraps of yarn which she had saved in a worn, brocade knitting bag . . .

Whatever the specific method used, my mother had learned, long before I knew her, how to balance pain with pleasure.

Elizabeth Skoglund

Today’s Prayer:

Lord somewhere in the world there are people in mental anguish over life’s trials and tribulations.  Often such pain is psychologically unbearable.  During these moments sometimes people don’t have the ability to hold their heads high with the assurance of knowing God’s powers to set things right.  Because of their inability to see your spiritual support most times every breath taken produce questions of their existence.  Lord to be honest it is during these times when emotional pain makes a person feel every so often they do not have much use for others.  And everything accomplished is tarnished with the shadow of sorrow; as it seems to their misfortune they were not given loved ones to uplift them during moments of afflictions.  Hum . . . Lord, it is within our moments of tribulations that we see the hand prints of God on our lives.  Therefore, I’m asking for your Holy presence among those who have yet to learn how to balance pain with pleasure.  Lord I’m asking that you teach them that sorrow only last for a moment.  Lord, I’m also praying they learn how to allow thoughts of joy to diminish their temporary gloomy day(s).  So, again, Lord, I’m asking that you turn on your spiritual lights for these people that they might see how to truly balance pain with pleasure; and in turn they will enjoy living once again.  Amen.

Your Loving Daughter,

Annette

Inspirational Fridays: Letting Go vs. Moving On

Claiming What’s Yours

You need to claim the events of your life to make yourself yours.  When you truly possess all you have been and done, which may take same time, you are fierce with reality.  –Florida Pier Scott-Maxwell

Photo Taken From:  www.usatoday.com
Photo Taken From: http://www.usatoday.com

It takes a long time to understand the difference between letting go and moving on, especially if you try to bypass the transitions following life-altering change.  Most women believe we can avoid transitions by becoming very busy.  “Waiting, done at really high speeds, will frequently look like something else,” observes Carrie Fisher hopefully.  Its’ called multitasking.  How often do we use the congestion and sheer occupation of our days to anesthetize ourselves against emotion, thought, and action?  When I make myself busy and permit the activities swirling around me to grab my attention, I tell myself over and over that I can’t think today about the choices I should be making or mourn what my heart is begging my brain to remember.  Call it the Scarlett Syndrome.  I’ll think about that tomorrow.  I’ll grieve over that tomorrow.  After all, tomorrow is another day.  “Life must go on,” Edna St. Vincent Millay Wrote, “I forget just why.”

Sarah Ban Breathnach

Inspirational Fridays: Guy In The Glass Poem

Artist:  Unknown
Artist: Unknown

Dale Wimbrow

(1895-1954)

When you get what you want in your struggle for pelf,
And the world makes you King for a day,
Then go to the mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that guy has to say.

For it isn’t your Father, or Mother, or Wife,
Who judgement upon you must pass.
The feller whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the guy staring back from the glass.

He’s the feller to please, never mind all the rest,
For he’s with you clear up to the end,
And you’ve passed your most dangerous, difficult test
If the guy in the glass is your friend.

You may be like Jack Horner and “chisel” a plum,
And think you’re a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you’re only a bum
If you can’t look him straight in the eye.

You can fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be heartaches and tears
If you’ve cheated the guy in the glass.

Inspirational Fridays – The American Dream

Photo Source:  www.sodhead.com
Photo Source: http://www.sodhead.com

An American businessman was standing at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.

“How long did it take you to catch them?” the American asked.

“Only a little while” the Mexican replied.

“Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” the American then asked.

“I have enough to support my family’s immediate needs” the Mexican said.

“But” the American then asked, “What do you do with the rest of your time?”

The Mexican fisherman said: “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life, senor.”

The American scoffed: “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds you could buy a bigger boat and, with the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats. Eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the consumers, eventually opening your own can factory. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise.”

The Mexican fisherman asked: “But senor, how long will this all take?”

To which the American replied: “15-20 years.”

“But what then, senor?”

The American laughed and said: “That’s the best part. When the time is right, you would announce an IPO – an Initial Public Offering – and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.”

“Millions, senor? Then what?”

The American said slowly: “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos…”

Source:  Roger Darlington