445 Final Essay.docx - Ronald Reagan\u2019s Vision of Hope Zachary Balty HIUS 445 The 1980s were a time of massive upheaval The decade before had been

445 Final Essay.docx - Ronald Reaganu2019s Vision of Hope...

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Ronald Reagan’s Vision of Hope Zachary Balty HIUS 445 October 18, 2018 The 1980s were a time of massive upheaval . The decade before had been filled with conflict . During the 1970s, gas prices had spiked as a result of the 1973 OPEC embargo 1 , with stagflation 2 coming alongside, and the failed idealism of Jimmy Carter left America searching for more in their next president . In a time of utter desperation, 1 Amadeo, Kimberly. "The Truth About the 1973 Arab Oil Crisis." The Balance. . 2 Amadeo, Kimberly. "Can Stagflation Happen Now?" The Balance. .
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1 Americans were simply starving for hope: a message to cling to in a bloated economy . Ronald Reagan provided that hope . The sports reporter-turned-actor-turned-politician guided the American public through economic recession and global strife and ultimately left office having a booming economy and (relative) world peace . However, not all Americans took to him with open arms . For the first part of Reagan’s tenure as President, his economic policies were met with criticism . During the beginning of Reagan’s second term, his willingness to meet with Mikhail Gorbachev was disdained on both sides of the aisle . The Iran-Contra Affair was argued as an impeachable offense . 3 However, even as Reagan left office, he was lauded by newspapers as well as a 63% exit approval rating . 4 This essay will show, at a summarial level, Ronald Reagan’s constant ability to avoid trouble by juxtaposing the meeting of the needs of a broken economy and war-torn Europe with a constant doctrine of hope, and a devoted focus upon his constituents . Reagan’s focus upon the people that he was elected to serve did not come as a surprise . Reagan, born into a poor, Irish Catholic household was taught at a young age to treat others with the kindness that he would like to receive . One important factor in Reagan’s upbringing was his religion, which was seen in 1930s Illinois with much of the disdain as Islam might be viewed in the rural midwest today . As a result, Reagan’s 3 Lozada, Carlos. “The Presidency Survived Watergate, Iran-contra, and the Clinton Scandals.” December 21, 2017. - presidency-survived-the-watergate-iran-contra-and-clinton-scandals-trump-will-exact-a-higher- toll/?utm_term=.ade0711f9c10 4 University of California, Santa Barbara. “Presidential Job Approval.” ? pres=40&sort=pop&direct=DESC&Submit=DISPLAY.
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2 father and mother implored their children to look beyond race, religion, and socioeconomic background when making friends . Reagan speaks of this in his autobiography, An American Life : When my brother and I were growing up, there were still ugly tumors of racial bigotry in much of America, including the corner of Illinois where we lived .
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