The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Saturday, June 26, 2004  

Not “A Mindful Human Being”

Deborah Solomon interviews Ron Reagan in Sunday’s New York Times Magazine (“The Son Also Rises,” June 27):

Solomon: How did your mother feel about being ushered to her seat by President Bush?

Reagan: Well, he did a better job than Dick Cheney did when he came to the rotunda. I felt so bad. Cheney brought my mother up to the casket, so she could pay her respects. She is in her 80’s, and she has glaucoma and has trouble seeing. There were steps, and he left her there. He just stood there, letting her flounder. I don’t think he's a mindful human being. That’s probably the nicest way I can put it.

And on the subject of the glowing and massive coverage of the funeral of his father, former President Ronald Reagan, there’s this:

Solomon: How do you account for all the glowing obituaries of him?

Reagan: I think it was a relief for Americans to look at pictures of something besides men on leashes. If you are going to call yourself a Christian -- and I don’t -- then you have to ask yourself a fundamental question, and that is: Whom would Jesus torture? Whom would Jesus drag around on a dog’s leash? How can Christians tolerate it? It is unconscionable. It has put our young men and women who are over there, fighting a war that they should not have been asked to fight -- it has put them in greater danger.

Keep talking, Ron. It’s nice having you on our side.

[Post-publication addendum (June 27): Also of interest: “The Other Reagan Legacy: Outspoken Son Ron,” by Rene Sanchez, the Washington Post, June 25.]

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