Ronald Reagan quotes

(From the book Ronald Reagan Talks to America)

"Our natural unalienable rights are now presumed to be a dispensation of government, divisible by a vote of the majority. The greatest good for the greatest number is a high-sounding phrase but contrary to the very basis of our Nation, unless it is accompanied by the recognition that we have certain rights which cannot be infringed upon, even if the individual stands outvoted by all of his fellow citizens. Without this recognition, majority rule is nothing more then mob rule."

—A Time for Choosing (Oct. 27, 1964)

"We have reached a turning point in time. It is our destiny—the destiny of our party—to raise a banner for the people of all parties to follow; but choose the colors well, for the people are not in a mood to follow the sickly pastels of expediency—the cynical shades of those who buy the people’s vote with the people’s money."

—Have We Been Out of Touch With Reality? (1967)

"We must guarantee every citizen his right to share in an abundant society proportionate to his ability. But we will not tolerate those who use either "civil rights" or the "right to dissent" as an excuse to take tot he streets for riot and mob violence—under the euphemism of civil disobedience."

—Have We Been Out of Touch With Reality? (1967)

"Now, what we have to recognize is that government does not produce freedom. People have a right, or an obligation to take freedom from government, and they must continue the struggle to keep it."

—The Last Island of Freedom: 1967

"Tonight, let us dedicate ourselves to renewing the American compact. I ask you not simply to "Trust me," but to trust your values—our values—and to hold me responsible for living up to them. I ask you trust the American spirit which knows no ethnic, religious, social political, regional, or economic boundaries, the spirit that burned with zeal in the hearts of millions of immigrants from every corner of the earth who came here is search of freedom."

—To the Republican national Convention: 1980

"No man is above the law and no man is below it."

—Take the judges out of politics: 1968

"It is important to recognize that unless both local and state law enforcement agencies meet their responsibilities, we may find them usurped by the federal government or ceded to it by default. When this happens we will have, in effect, a national police force."

—Crime: 1968

"It is interesting to note that during the Great Depression we had an all-time low in crime. Poverty is one contributing factor, but we should not delude ourselves that simply by improving social conditions we can automatically eliminate crime."

—Crime: 1968

"We’ve broken too many damn treaties. We’re not going to flood them out."

—The Dos Rios Dam Project vs. the Indians of Round Valley, California

"Now, I don’t want to give the impression that this kind of reporting could actually influence anyone, but after reading their accounts of what I’m supposed to be doing, I did go out the other day and sign a recall petition, and I was the subject of recall."

—The Right of the People to Know: 1969

"Strangely and illogically, this is very often the same educator who i8nterprets his academic freedom as the right to indoctrinate students with his view of things. Woe to the student who challenges his interpretation of history, or who questions the economic theory given as proven formula in what is, at best, a very in exact science."

—What is Academic Freedom? 1970

"From time to time, we have been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to me managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. But if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capability to govern someone else?"

—Inaugural Address: 1981

"When those who advocate an open mind keep it open at both ends with no thought process in the middle, the open mind becomes a hose for any idea that comes along. If scholars are to be recognized as having a right to press their particular value judgments, perhaps the time has come also for institutions of higher learning to assert themselves as positive forces in the battles for men’s minds.

"This could mean they would insist upon mature, responsible conduct and respect for the individual from their faculty members and might even call on them to be proponents of those ethical and moral standards demanded by the great majority of our society.

"These things could be done and should be done. The people not only have a right to know what is going on at their universities, they have a right to expect the best from those responsible for them."

—On the Function of a University: 1966

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