Ronald Reagan

Topics: Cold War, Ronald Reagan, Mikhail Gorbachev Pages: 8 (2814 words) Published: May 6, 2014
Aaron Zuniga-Bennett
Rueben D’Silva
22 April 2014
In the early 1980s, the American people elected Ronald Reagan as President of the United States of America. Many people claim that Reagan was one of the greatest presidents of all time, while others believe that the country would have been much better off had Reagan never been elected. Regardless of their political preferences, it is undeniable that Ronald Reagan changed the world in the 1980s and his work as president will be forever remembered in the countless books of history. Ronald Reagan ran as a Republican and was the absolute spirit of a conservative. He worked to bring forth the ideal of conservatism in America and successfully captured and isolated that belief in the presidency. As president, Reagan worked to bring the ideal of American exceptionalism back to the country, to set the economy on the right track, and to end the Communist threat that had been present since the end of World War II. For all practical purposes, Ronald Reagan was a president who accomplished more than he set forth to do and did so famously; some would say infamously. Nonetheless, Reagan accomplished more in his eight year presidency than most presidents of the 20th Century. He is widely hailed as the man who ended the Cold War and will forever be remembered as the man who led to the conservative resurgence in America. He was a man of profound ability and charm and America is better off for having Reagan as the Commander-in-Chief during the latter portion of the 20th Century. Ronald Reagan was born on February 6, 1911 in Tampico, Illinois. His mother, Nelle, was a homemaker; and his father, Jack, was a traveling salesman (Ronald Reagan). The Reagan family moved often as Jack searched throughout the state for work and Ronald Reagan grew up in a very poor family. Despite the hardships his family encountered, Reagan graduated from high school in Dixon, Illinois and earned a football scholarship to attend Eureka College (Reagan, “American Life” 43). After graduating from Eureka, Reagan pursued a career in Hollywood where he starred in over fifty movies and eventually became the president of the Screen Actors Guild. As president of the Screen Actors Guild, Reagan worked to remove all suspected Communists from Hollywood; all the while encouraging conservative values in the liberal slanted film industry. In 1964, the former actor, Ronald Reagan, delivered a nationally televised political speech on behalf of conservative presidential candidate Barry Goldwater. The speech became one of Reagan’s most fundamental speeches that completely changed his life. In his speech, Reagan presented the country with his ideals of a perfect country, supported by his conservative values. He also spoke about how America needs a strong national defense, a reduction of taxes, and the need to defeat the Communist threat in the Soviet Union. He also stated, “We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope for man on earth, or we will sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness” (Reagan, “Speaking” 36). After his speech, Reagan was approached by many influential Republicans who urged him to run for Governor of California. His speech, on behalf of Barry Goldwater became one of his greatest triumphs. Reagan initially refused when he was asked to run for governor; nevertheless, many influential Republicans got together and formed a fundraising group called “Friends of Reagan.” They raised a great deal of money and in 1966; Reagan defeated the needed Democrat Governor of California (What Would Reagan Do?). At that moment, his political career began and in 1981, Reagan assumed the role as President of the United States of America. Throughout his presidency, Reagan set America on a course to defeat the Communist threat in the Soviet Union, to boost military funding, to cut taxes, and to return optimism to the American people. Reagan worked...
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