In 1932, the Great Depression had given us massive unemployment, stock markets crashing, bankruptcies, farm and home foreclosures, and endless food lines and soup kitchens.
FDR addressed the nation in his first Inaugural address. The man said: “This is pre-eminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today. This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
On Dec. 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, and the United States was at war with Nazi Germany, Italy and the Empire of Japan. Much of the Pacific Fleet had been destroyed, our troops in the Far East isolated and at the mercy of a merciless enemy, and our Army was nowhere near ready for war on the scale needed to defeat these juggernauts.
FDR addressed the nation. The man said: “No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory. With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph. So help us God.”
On 9/11, the passengers of Flight 93, realizing their time was at hand, knew their only chance was to fight their way to the cockpit and take control of the jetliner. As Americans before them, they fought. Todd Beamer — he could have been your neighbor next door — was on that plane. The man’s final words were: “Are you ready guys? Let’s roll.”
Later that day, President George W. Bush addressed the nation. The man said: “A great people have been moved to defend a great nation. Terrorist attacks can shake the foundations of our biggest buildings, but they cannot touch the foundation of America. These acts shatter steel, but they cannot dent the steel of American resolve.”