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IMAGE ABOVE FROM FACEHOOK POST... Images below from the September 1992 edition of the Orange Curtain Review, a tabloid newspaper published by this author.

‘We are all equal in the eyes of God,’ said Mr. Reagan

    Monday, January 29, 2018 -- (Long Beach, CA) -- The best political speech is a short one, but who says even a single word when our nation gets ripped apart by hatred?

    Mr. Reagan understood.

    "WE ARE ALL EQUAL IN THE EYES OF GOD. But as Americans that is not enough -- we must be equal in the eyes of each other. We can no longer judge each other on the basis of what we are, but must, instead, start finding out who we are. In America, our origins matter less than our destinations." -- RONALD REAGAN , Aug 17, 1992 address to the Republican National Convention in Houston.

    Then as now, unless one listens closely, ears hear only the loudest snarls.

    “THERE IS A RELIGIOUS WAR going on in our country for the soul of America. It is a cultural war, as critical to the kind of nation we will one day be, as was the Cold War itself.... We must take back our cities, and take back our culture, and take back our country." -- PATRICK BUCHANAN , Aug 17, 1992 address to the Republican National Convention in Houston, immediately following Mr. Reagan.

    Only God Himself is All-Powerful and Omnipotent, and so who among us can address a nation and claim to speak for Him? We can kneel before Him, and thank Him for His embrace, unless wearing a cloak, one is neither Judge nor Jury.

    Great hair and fancy clothing cannot mask an imperfect soul, for each person is broken. Even Popes once were not infallible.

    Yet, the vast majority of the American people saw in Mr. Reagan his warm heart that rose beyond politics itself. The White House -- he showed us -- was your house. His happiest moments began in youth as a lifeguard, and when his job was later to be the world’s most powerful soul, his smile was brightest in the simplest acts of absolute fidelity, to ride a horse or row a tiny boat with his wife.

    Ronald Reagan did not pound his chest, but instead shock hands and listened, whether that was to bargain taxes with House Speaker Tip O’Neill, or confront the risk of nuclear war when meeting the Communist leaders of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, our superpower foe with missiles aimed at all of our cities. Perhaps the man famous for gaffes would be happy that Twitter did not exist.

    The Republican party lost seats in every election, and the world was gripped in a global Cold War. Tax cuts fed the rich but did not “trickle down,” and military spending choked other parts of government. Still, a majority of Americans loved Ronald Reagan. When delivering his most famous words -- in front of the stones of division -- Ronald Reagan pointed to concrete, and demanded that, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall.”

    Nobody thought Mr. Reagan would defeat an incumbent president, particular since the people of deep faith had jumped across a wide divide to land across the abyss in the prior election.

    A peanut farmer from Georgia rose to the White House in 1976, thanks is people of deep faith. Jimmy Carter -- a humble soul born again -- got judged by millions of Americans as worthy of receive their vote, not because of his party, or his support of Martin Luther King. Mr. Carter was a humble soul, absolutely faithful to his own wife, and to God.

    Mr. Reagan did not teach Sunday school. Though clearly devout, he rarely attend mass. The former Governor of California spoke passionately of faith, but he had signed the most significant abortion act in the nation. As president, he spoke of social issues, but did little beyond words. He addressed annual rallies against abortion, but addressed the crowds by telephone.

    Some felt Mr. Reagan was a “fanatic.” His words and deeds show he was not. His respect to people of deep faith was consistent to his broader love of all the people. He first became a leader of the arch-conservative movement in a half-hour speech in 1964, but his focus in Republican politics was to cut taxes and push down unions. When he failed to win the Republican nomination in 1976, people of deep faith jumped across the abyss, to the narrow cliff of supporting the peanut farmer... not because of his party, but because of his faith.

    Jimmy Carter had a tough presidency, and historians agree that he didn’t do that well. Clearly, though, it was unsure whether Americans of deep faith would ditch the Sunday school teacher to support the Governor who signed the biggest abortion law in the nation.

    People of deep faith vote in different fashion that followers of machine politics. The major parties shackle politics in chains, enslaving voters in a prison of platforms and planks.

    In 1980, people of deep faith again shook off chains of politics. Voters always can see flaws, for every soul is imperfect. Yes, Mr. Carter was and is a man of deep faith, who loves all the people, and who is devoted absolutely to his wife and to God. It was the beauty of Mr. Reagan’s smile that allowed people of deep faith to jump across the abyss again, to the other cliff, and no one who voted for Mr. Reagan then looks back with doubt.

    Sadly, it seems that Mr. Reagan is not the voice remembered, but instead those who tweet and slur, and in today’s chaos can be heard the voice of fury that immediately followed Mr. Reagan, at the Republican National Convention in 1992.

    Speaking to the Republican faithful, Ronald Reagan showed that he loved the American people... all of them.

    At the Houston convention, Ronald Reagan’s own Vice President, Mr. George Herbert Walker Bush, sought his own second term as president. Unexpectedly, Mr. Bush faced a tough election against a young Governor with great hair.

    “My fondest hope,” said Ronald Reagan, “is that you will love your country not for her power or wealth, but for her selflessness and her idealism.”

    Ronald Reagan still showed magnificent ability to deliver a script.

    The 1992 election was tough because Americans were ripped apart by hatred, and the President did little to bring people together. Despite the Inaugural of Mr. Bush, America was NOT a kinder and gentler nation. Our streets burned when riots broke out in Los Angeles. The economy stagnated. The environment was under siege. Schools were failing. Cities were crumbling into ruin.

    Rage and injustice shined more brightly in their flame then a thousand points of light. Unfortunately, the kind words from Mr. Reagan were followed by fury.

    Immediately after Mr. Reagan’s speech, Pat Buchanan wrapped his fist and spit harsh views about war in “God’s Country.”

    Mr. Buchanan harsh words and tone about the opponent’s wife -- Hillary Clinton -- nailed her onto the cross of “radical feminism.” The hate-spitting politician called for the purging of gays and lesbians. Women will be denied choice. Free speech will fall subject to strict obscenity tests. "Conservatives of the heart” would make sure the environment remains forever dominated for human needs. “There is a religious war going on in our country for the soul of America,” said the voice of fury.

    Pat Buchanan -- and those who now march in his goose steps -- may cite Mr. Reagan, but yet clearly did not listen to what he said.

    In 1992, streets burned from fire and chaos. Raw hatred now rips America apart beyond riots. Brimstone of fury are dropping like bombs upon our souls.

    Americans needs to come together. We have a lot of work to do. We need to stop yelling and punching and hating, so that again we can stand with a straight spine..., together..., united.

    A hat and nice hair cannot buy greatness for American.

    If division is the path to our demise, then great hair or a nice hat are unworthy to buy a human soul.

    Let souls of deep faith, who aspire to deliverance to His Own greatness admit by our own imperfection that sometimes we confess to choosing wrongly.

    Perhaps now is the time for people of deep faith to once again leap across the abyss, to land on another narrow cliff, far away from the man with the great hair and closer to Mr. Reagan’s precious words.


-- Billy Orton

S   A   V   I   N   G       A   M   E   R   I   C   A

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February 15, 2018    Go, Washington Fat Cats! FB     Grace
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January 31, 2018    Who shall smile, when Russia fires brimstone upon North Korea? FB     Grace
January 30, 2018    What is the State of our imperfect Union? FB     Grace
January 29, 2018    ‘We are all equal in the eyes of God,’ said Mr. Reagan FB     Grace
January 28, 2018    Does America still have a Confessor-in-Chief? FB     Grace
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January 21, 2018    The imperfection of the human soul FB     Grace
January 20, 2018    When leaders learn from “sh_t-hole” nations FB     Grace
January 18, 2018    One meaning of A.D.A. FB     Grace
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January 4, 2018    A soul slain like a sacrificial lamb FB     Grace
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June 18, 2017    Three fathers construct America’s smallest working barn FB     Grace
June 15, 2017    Party of Grace throwing Independence Day barn dance to help save America from hate FB     Grace

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Billy Orton is a novelist and historian living in Long Beach, California.