Thursday, 23 January 2014
The article entitled 'Ronald Reagan De-Mythologised' written by Juan Cole in 2004 examines Reagan's sense of 'meanness' towards people during his time as president. Within the article, Cole recalls a speech where Reagan shrugged off that there was hunger in America and blamed it on 'dieting'. He also " tried to cut federal funding for school lunches for the poor. He tried to have ketchup reclassified as a vegetable to save money." (Cole, 2004) Reagan's inability to understand how the other half lived was a major mistake on his part. As the president, it is a duty to protect all Americans which Reagan unfortunately did not uphold as Cole examines in this article.
Within the LGBT community, Reagan possessed a small minded approach to the AIDS crisis that was raging through the United States in the 1980s, "his inability to come to terms with the horrible human tragedy here, or with the emerging science on it, made his health policies ineffective and even destructive" (Cole, 2004) It seems like Reagan was not sympathetic to the people who were affected by AIDS and was not able to protect these people for the way he thought.
Cole explains in his article how he viewed one of Reagan's speeches about religious freedom, "I had a sense that 'religious freedom' was being used as a stick to beat those regimes the Reagan administration did not like." The policies that Reagan had during his time led to more extreme issues that the United States were involved in due to some of the policies Reagan backed, for example the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction were encouraged by Reagan for short term policy reasons which led to a more dramatic turn of events later on in the United States.