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According to the New York Times, and other breaking reports, “Nancy Reagan, an Influential and Protective First Lady dies at 94.” She passed away on Sunday, March 6, 2016 of congestive heart failure at her home in Bel-Air, California. She was 94 years young. Wow! What a long and eventful life. Mrs. Reagan is to be buried next to her beloved husband President Ronald Reagan, who died on June 5, 2004 and is interred at the Reagan Presidential Library in beautiful Simi Valley California.

Nancy Reagan  White House, Dec 1982

Nancy Reagan, White House Dec 1982

As she transitions onward, we extend condolences to the Reagan family, a host of friends, and a profound regard for Mrs. Nancy Reagan, our fashion icon and champion against drug abuse.

Nancy Reagan, A Fashion Icon

The Reagans occupied the White House from 1981-1989. A petit woman with a keen eye for the aesthetics, Mrs. Reagan was also known as a great dresser who loved the color of red. She would become a fashion icon to many women of her time. I can vividly recall my co-worker and kindred spirit, we both loved to wear hats, running up to my desk beaming with joy over having Nancy Reagan in the White House, as stylish hats and dresses were surly coming back!

Tired of only finding fashionable pantsuits in the stores, a big symbol of the women’s lib movement in the 70s which was good, Mrs. Reagan’s feminine sense of style was good news indeed. Sure enough, soon we were able to find fashionable dresses in the department stores again, though we still liked our pantsuits.

And television shows exploded with glamorous, well-dressed women reminiscent of the forties. Only this time, Primetime TV featured a highly independent woman, ready to claim her own space with no apologies. Hence, “Dallas” the popular TV Series, c.1978–1999, with all of its usual human dalliances, became the show to watch back then.

Yet, in retrospect, for me the new Reagan Administration also marks another definitive shift in our great society which, unlike TV’s Dallas, was far from entertaining.

High Crimes in the ‘Hood and Loud Music

One day, seems my quiet world suddenly changed. It was the year of 1981, as I recall. News reports began to escalate of young brothers running up and snatching gold chains off the necks of unsuspecting young women as they waited for the bus. And tension filled the air! Having to keep on the alert, no longer could we read at the bus stop. Things had definitely changed, and for the worse unfortunately.

Soon, someone turns up the volume. And the explosion of a so-called “Rap” music had hit the scene. Young people were playing it as loud as they possibly could in the streets and in their homes. Though an ardent music lover, I hated the discordant sounds passing as music that bounced off the walls of my apartment, which was downright painful.

Thankfully, after praying for peace and harmony in my home, my noisy neighbors soon moved. It was a very nice neighborhood, like folks had real jobs, so things stayed relatively calm.

Yet, depressing news of drug dealers, street gangs and drive-by shootings began to abound in the Black Community that reflected on Primetime TV. Of course, as usual, only Black and Brown folks were spotlighted, while White drug-related crimes and abuses virtually went unreported.

Just Say No: A Powerful Spiritual Command

Around this time, in 1981, Nancy Reagan envisions an anti-drug educational program to prevent illegal or “recreational” drug use, particularly among young people. Part of the government’s War on Drugs, this anti-drug campaign would simply become known as Just Say No, an advertising slogan created by Nancy Reagan, as a First Lady initiative, who obviously knew something about self-direction being an accomplished actress in her previous life.

With Nancy Reagan’s dedication and hard work, both national and international attention was drawn to the ever-increasing drug problem. Of course, the anti-drug campaign also drew the usual unfair criticism. The program’s critics erroneously labeled such efforts as too simplistic, a catch phrase not really addressing the hardcore issues of systemic drug addiction, and so on.

Thankfully, some drug abusers were reportedly helped by Mrs. Reagan’s vigorous efforts, who once said: “If you can save just one child, it’s worth it.”

Sadly today, some thirty-five years later, seems drug abuse in America has reached epidemic proportions across all social realities. Still, there are those who keep trying to help the hopeless as best they can.

I’ve always liked Nancy Reagan’s creative slogan of “Just Say No” to drug abuse. Actually, this is a powerful spiritual command, classically known as self-discipline, which we can deploy on our behalf. Self-discipline (or self-direction) is a great mental tool worth having; particularly in combating toxic anger, drug addiction, or any self-destructive habit within us.

The Importance of Good Government

Today, as we move toward electing a new president, the importance of good government is loudly before us once again! Sadly, the candidates usual pandering to self-interest groups (who often represent blocks of votes) seems to be the norm, except for one perhaps.

If only we can learn that what is good for one, is actually good for all on the level that really matters. Then we can really get things done and make democracy work for all.

Perhaps, one day, We-the-People will realize that democracy works best when we lay aside our smoldering self-interests and actually vote for the good of all. Why not today?

Saying Goodbye to Nancy Reagan

Meanwhile, as we say our goodbyes to Fmr First Lady Nancy Reagan, let us honor her good works against drug abuse, and revive the Just Say No Anti-drug Campaign in her name. I’m sure she will be there in spirit and praying for its success.

Free the mind and think before you vote!

© 2016 by Delores L Adams and The Aunt Jemimah Post. All rights reserved.

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