By Cortney O'Brien, Young America's Foundation Intern at the Reagan Ranch Center
Nationally syndicated radio show host Hugh Hewitt praised President Ronald Reagan’s oratorical skills and understanding of the importance of human freedom at the Wendy P. McCaw Reagan Ranch Roundtable Luncheon on Tuesday, June 12 (scroll down for video). The event, held at the Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara, CA, celebrated the 25th anniversary of President Reagan’s speech at the Brandenburg Gate, in which the President memorably proclaimed: “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” Hewitt spoke to a full crowd about Reagan’s momentous speech, which led to the destruction of the Berlin Wall end of the Cold War. He predicted the President’s words will continue to resonate: “I believe that 75 years from now, on the 100th anniversary of that speech we just saw, there will be a celebration here that will be extraordinary,” he said. “As they look back 100 years ago at the clearest enunciation of the demand for human freedom that has been uttered in modernity […] that’s why I’m sure you, like me, got the chill [hearing those words again].”Reagan and his speechwriter Peter Robinson faced adversity when submitting the Brandenburg Gate speech after editors continued to delete the now famous ‘tear down this wall!’ line for fear of retaliation. But, Hewitt marveled at how the President and his speechwriter ultimately prevailed: “The President allowed his instinct to triumph.”Following his speech, Hewitt traveled to the Reagan Ranch, where he broadcast his radio show live from the front patio of President Reagan’s adobe home.
Cortney O'Brien is a Sarah T. Hermann Intern Scholar at Young America's Foundation's Reagan Ranch Center.