The death of Margaret Thatcher grieves the hearts of freedom-loving people everywhere.
Back in 2004, I commemorated the 25th anniversary of her rise to power with this piece. One can only hope -- despite her status as a full-throated conservative -- that the eulogies of her will be honest enough to teach a new generation about her many impressive accomplishments.
It is difficult to overstate what Margaret Thatcher meant to me, as a teenager growing up in the 80's. Her courage (personal and political), her dedication to her principles, her work ethic, her multi-faceted intelligence and her love for freedom were inspirational.
Indeed, for women (whether they recognize it or not!), Margaret Thatcher represents the finest political role model ever. Though she was proudly a female, she never hid behind identity politics or resorted to tears or other stereotypically feminine strategems for her own political advantage. She never sought special favors, succumbed to an entitlement mentality, or forced us to witness her own psychodramas played out on the public stage. She didn't ride any man's coattails to the pinnacle of power -- she arrived by virtue of her own skill, diligence and ambition from modest origins as a green grocer's daughter, in a class-bound and often openly-sexist society. She endured without complaint (or apparent concern) sharp and frequently-unjust mockery from a left wing that's much cleverer and more cutting than the one here. She simply beat the men around her, and led the men and women of Britain, because she was the best.
She saved Britain from the insidious threat of collectivism -- and helped win the Cold War -- by dint of her vision, fortitude and profound gallantry. She was one of a kind.
To the end of her days, Margaret Thatcher never, ever went "wobbly." In a country marked by a rich and glorious history, she has carved out a proud place for herself. It is well-earned. May she rest in peace and may light perpetual shine upon her.
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