Tag: Reagan

On This Day Forty Years Ago

It was forty years ago today, and I remember it well. I was working at a radio station in Norfolk, Virginia, and part of my task was to read the news. The news that day was rather shocking. As President Reagan walked out of the Washington Hilton, gunman John Hinckley waited in the crowd. Shots were fired; a scramble was on to grab the assailant and protect the president. No one knew at the time that Reagan had been hit…. Read more »

Reversing the Faith of an Adult Lifetime

Over the years, I’ve taught my “Witness of Whittaker Chambers” course many times. It never gets old or stale; in fact, each time I sense that the Lord uses it to help me see even more of His mercy and grace. The life of Whittaker Chambers exemplifies God’s grace while simultaneously challenging readers of his masterful autobiography, Witness, to seek ever more earnestly the face of God. In teaching the course this semester, the depth of Chambers’s personal path and… Read more »

I’m a Conservative, but What Does That Mean Anymore?

January 6, 2021, at the United States Capitol, was not a protest by American constitutional conservatives. American constitutional conservatives do not storm the Capitol building in an attempt to stop the counting of electoral votes in an election that was certified by all fifty states, both Republican and Democrat, to be a reliable vote count. American constitutional conservatism does not reject the decisions of courts, both state and local, that ruled on the multitude of cases that sought to overturn… Read more »

Supreme Court Nominations & the Constitution

I sat in this chamber twice. The first occasion was listening to the Supreme Court hear arguments. I don’t remember the case. My presence there, in 1981, was while I was interning at the Court’s history office as I worked on my doctorate at The American University. The second time was in early 1999 at a conference on constitutional history. Attendees were then served dinner at the Court. Of all the institutions set up by the Constitution, the Court is… Read more »

Stability in Times of Crisis

The year 2020 has many detractors lately. With a major pandemic, economic distress threatening to equal the depths of the Great Depression, and the mass protests over police brutality, some are comparing this year with the worst ones in the past: the 1918 Spanish Flu; the Great Depression mentioned above; the 1968 unrest and political chaos that included two assassinations of public figures—Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King. For some, this might be the image that dominates: Our society is… Read more »

The Great Confrontation

Seventy-one years ago yesterday, one of the most intense political confrontations in American history occurred in the US House of Representatives. August 25, 1948, was the day that the man on the right in this photo, Alger Hiss, was asked publicly whether he had ever known the man standing on the left side of the photo. His name was Whittaker Chambers. What was the controversy all about and why did it captivate the public for the next two years? Chambers,… Read more »

Is This the Reagan Approach?

I’m all for presidents trying to reach out and talk with leaders of other countries, even when they’re not our friends. After all, that was a real factor in the fall of the Soviet Union. Ronald Reagan tried to communicate with, in order—Brehznev, Andropov, and Chernenko—but they all rebuffed him. Then they died. He finally found someone he could talk to and arranged a time when they could sit down together. Reagan developed a genuine relationship with Gorbachev, but it… Read more »