Inside the Beltway: Reagan's Independence Day reminder

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Patriotism is still alive and well. No, really. A new survey reveals 78% of Americans currently describe themselves as “patriotic.” See the Poll du Jour at column’s end for the breakdown — which reveals that, yes, Republicans are more in touch with their inner patriot than Democrats.

All that aside, from another place and time comes this optimistic and forthright reminder about the nation and its heritage from then-President Ronald Reagan, in a speech delivered on July 4, 1981.

“Let the Fourth of July always be a reminder that here in this land, for the first time, it was decided that man is born with certain God-given rights; that government is only a convenience created and managed by the people, with no powers of its own except those voluntarily granted to it by the people,” Reagan told the nation four decades ago.

“We sometimes forget that great truth, and we never should, because putting people first has always been America’s secret weapon. It’s the way we’ve kept the spirit of our revolution alive — a spirit that drives us to dream and dare, and take great risks for a greater good. It’s the spirit of Fulton and Ford, the Wright brothers and Lindbergh, and of all our astronauts. It’s the spirit of Joe Louis, Babe Ruth, and a million others who may have been born poor, but who would not be denied their day in the sun,” he continued.

“I’m convinced that we’re getting that spirit back. The nation is pulling together. We’re looking to the future with new hope and confidence — and we know we can make America great again by putting the destiny of this nation back in the hands of the people. And why shouldn’t we? Because, after all, we are Americans,” Reagan said.

“As Dwight Eisenhower once said: ‘There is nothing wrong with America that the faith, love of freedom, intelligence and energy of her citizens cannot cure.’ He was right. If we just stick together, and remain true to our ideals, we can be sure that America’s greatest days lie ahead.”

FOR THE LEXICON

“DeSantis Derangement Syndrome.”

Here’s a handy term from PJ Media columnist Rick Moran, who cites the news media’s negative treatment of the Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“Naturally, the media is getting an early start warming up their smear machinery against DeSantis. Their problem so far has been poor marksmanship caused by faulty ammunition,” Mr. Moran observed.

TRUMP ON THE FOURTH

Former President Donald Trump also had wisdom to share on Independence Day. Here’s what he said during a speech at the Lincoln Memorial on July 4, 2019.

“Nearly 250 years ago, a volunteer army of farmers and shopkeepers, blacksmiths, merchants and militiamen risked life and limb to secure American liberty and self-government,” Mr. Trump said.

“This evening, we have witnessed the noble might of the warriors who continue that legacy. They guard our birthright with vigilance and fierce devotion to the flag and to our great country. Now we must go forward as a nation with that same unity of purpose. As long as we stay true to our course, as long as we remember our great history, as long as we never ever stop fighting for a better future, then there will be nothing that America cannot do,” the 45th president advised.

FOX ON THE FOURTH

Fox News begins Independence Day coverage on Friday, with heartfelt and patriotic fare themed on the idea of the “Proud America” which continues through Sunday.

Network hosts will appear at such sites as West Point; the Kansas City Airshow and World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri; and the Eisenhower Memorial in Washington, D.C.

The network also will present a special edition of “Sunday Night in America” at 7 p.m. ET with host Trey Gowdy spotlighting how America has overcome challenges of the past year, with an emphasis on “patriotism and triumph.”

NEWS YOU CAN USE

Know a young angler? Ben Ryder, an editor at the always interesting OutdoorHub.com, was determined to find the best rod and reel for his own children, ages 3 to 9. Here’s what he says:

“This summer, I swore I would get the kids something more suitable to actually catching fish, and a rig that they could use for the next few years. With that in mind, I tapped the brain of our resident in-house expert angler, Andy Husek, and we settled on two youth rods sold by Walmart to test out. Since I wanted to be sure the rigs would be capable, we went out on the waters of Lake St. Clair in Southeast Michigan for a little pleasure cruise in search of walleye,” Mr. Ryder advises.

And his two top picks: Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2 Youth Spinning Reel and Fishing Rod Combo and the Shakespeare Amphibian Youth Spinning Reel and Fishing Rod Combo. Mr. Ryder also recommends Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line (8 pound).

WEEKEND REAL ESTATE

For sale: The W.C. Fields Estate, an Italianate mansion built in 1920 on one acre in Los Angeles. The iconic actor lived in the home for many years; a “celebration of Hollywood’s Golden Age.” Four bedrooms, six baths, original design and details, antique mahogany woodwork, glass solarium, gourmet kitchen; 8,010 square feet. Pool, walled courtyards, formal gardens, balconies. Priced at $15 million through Compass.com; enter 21-745522 in search function.

POLL DU JOUR

• 73% of U.S. adults will celebrate Independence Day “about the same as usual” this year; 20% will celebrate less, 8% will celebrate more.

• 39% overall would describe themselves as “very patriotic”; 60% of Republicans, 42% of independents and 24% of Democrats agree.

• 39% overall say they are “somewhat patriotic”; 32% of Republicans, 39% of independents and 47% of Democrats agree.

• 15% overall say they are “not very patriotic”; 6% of Republicans, 11% of independents and 23% of Democrats agree.

• 7% overall say they are “not at all patriotic”; 2% of Republicans, 7% of independents and 7% of Democrats agree.

SOURCE: An Economist/YouGov poll of 1,500 U.S. adults conducted June 26-29.

• Happy Independence Day, and thank you for reading Inside the Beltway.

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