Not surprisingly, here's an alternative view of Reagan's presidency (you would expect anything less?). First, there's no question that he inspired a new generation (or two) of conservatives. There was something infectious about him that resonated with many (not me, though). Nevertheless... This "pride" in America that so many speak of in connection with his presidency, begs a further question: For whom? Certainly, the poor and disenfranchised had little inspiration from his presidency. The S.F. Chronicle described his presidency (I'm paraphrasing) as essentially legitimizing indifference towards the lower class. Reagan's budget cuts started the modern homeless problem in the U.S. If you don't live in a major urban city, you haven't seen it except on television. If you do, you know what I'm talking about. He made it ok to ignore poor people and the less fortunate. I think many wanted just that – a way to forget about the poor and the minorities and not feel guilty about it. He ignored AIDS until it was brought to the doorsteps of the White House. He nearly bankrupted the country with deficit spending. His trickle-down economic theory trickled down about as far as the upper middle class. Today there are more living below the poverty line than ever before, and the percentages are growing. Reagan was the primary force that set this in motion. To his credit, he understood that if he fed the rich, and pacified the conservative middle class with meaningless tax cuts, he could gain a majority vote. It worked beautifully twice. He did not end the Cold War. Yes he spoke fervently against it, but Communism was imploding under its own weight for years. Like the Iran hostage crisis, it was resolved on his watch, more due to luck than anything else. One could argue that he needlessly cost the country billions in the Cold War "effort". Eighteen billion for Star Wars (can we say boondoggle) - an ill-posed, ill conceived and worthless project, is a perfect example. Ironically, stem cell research might reveal the answer to Alzheimer’s. Unfortuntely, one of the Reagan "progeny", George Bush, sets policy based on the religious right, so we may never know. So give the man and his family their due. Life has been tough for his wife for the last ten years. I don't believe he was evil, just ignorant. But his "morning in America" was bright only for the few. Lots of bad things were set in place with his presidency that the country still deals with today. That's his legacy for the growing lower class.