Win One for The Gipper "” Notre Dame Commencement Speech "” Ronald Reagan 1981 * PITD
Win One for #TheGipper "” Notre Dame Commencement Speech "” #RonaldReagan 1981 * #PITD
May 17, 1981
This is your day, and whatever I say should take cognizance of that fact. It is a milestone in life, and it marks a time of change.
Winston Churchill, during the darkest period of the "Battle of Britain" in World War II said: "When great causes are on the move in the world"¦ we learn we are spirits, not animals, and that something is going on in space and time, and beyond space and time, which, whether we like it or not, spells duty."
Now, I'm going to mention again that movie that Pat and I and Notre Dame were in, because it says something about America. First, #KnuteRockne as a boy came to America with his parents from Norway. And in the few years it took him to grow up to college age, he became so American that here at #NotreDame, he became an All American in a game that is still, to this day, uniquely American.
As a coach, he did more than teach young men how to play a game. He believed truly that the noblest work of man was building the character of man. And maybe that's why he was a living legend. No man connected with football has ever achieved the stature or occupied the singular niche in the Nation that he carved out for himself, not just in a sport, but in our entire social structure.
And then he told the story at halftime to a team that was losing, and one of the only teams he had ever coached that was torn by dissension and jealousy and factionalism. The seniors on that team were about to close out their football careers without learning or experiencing any of the real values that a game has to impart. None of them had known #GeorgeGipp. They were children when he played for Notre Dame. It was to this team that Rockne told the story and so inspired them that they rose above their personal animosities. For someone they had never known, they joined together in a common cause and attained the unattainable.
But is there anything wrong with young people having an experience, feeling something so deeply, thinking of someone else to the point that they can give so completely of themselves? There will come times in the lives of all of us when we'll be faced with causes bigger than ourselves, and they won't be on a playing field.
This Nation was born when a band of men, the Founding Fathers, a group so unique we've never seen their like since, rose to such selfless heights. Lawyers, tradesmen, merchants, farmers"”56 men achieved security and standing in life but valued freedom more. They pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. Sixteen of them gave their lives. Most gave their fortunes. All preserved their sacred honor.
They gave us more than a nation. They brought to all mankind for the first time the concept that man was born free, that each of us has inalienable rights, ours by the grace of God, and that government was created by us for our convenience, having only the powers that we choose to give it. This is the heritage that you're about to claim as you come out to join the society made up of those who have preceded you by a few years, or some of us by a great many.
This experiment in man's relation to man is a few years into its third century. Saying that may make it sound quite old. But let's look at it from another viewpoint or perspective. A few years ago, someone figured out that if you could condense the entire history of life on Earth into a motion picture that would run for 24 hours a day, 365 days"”maybe on leap years we could have an intermission"”this idea that is the United States wouldn't appear on the screen until 31/2 seconds before midnight on December 31st. And in those 3? seconds not only would a new concept of society come into being, a golden hope for all mankind, but more than half the activity, economic activity in world history, would take place on this continent. Free to express their genius, individual Americans, men and women, in 3 1/2 seconds, would perform such miracles of invention, construction, and production as the world had never seen.
If you have any suggestions, questions or concerns please leave them below. Thanks for watching and make it an outstanding day! *** I am a proud American, blessed father, a staunch 2A activist and a Marine Corps Veteran that just happens to be 100% blind. This is a look at the Second Amendment, firearms, self Defense, Constitutionally protected rights, Liberty and Freedom from the perspective of a Visually Impaired, Blind American.
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