Proclamation 5611 -- National Consumers Week, 1987

February 19, 1987

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

In the bicentennial year of the Constitution of the United States, it is appropriate that we reflect on the cherished freedoms and rights on which our open marketplace is founded. In recognition of the importance of the Constitution to American consumers in assuring us the many blessings we enjoy today, the theme for National Consumers Week 1987 shall be ``Consumers Celebrate the Constitution.''

Two hundred years ago, a group of patriots conceived the Constitution and thereby created the political, economic, and social framework for our Nation. As a result, many precious freedoms have been guaranteed to American citizens. Inherent in these is the freedom to produce, to sell, and to buy or not to buy.

Our competitive marketplace has flourished and become the most productive in the world, providing American consumers with unparalleled choices and opportunities. The goal of the Constitution's framers was to provide a free market in goods and services marked by creativity, by invention, and by the productivity of American workers.

We can be thankful today for the wisdom of our Founders. A functioning national market for goods and services with common money, standard weights and measures, reliable legal procedures respecting honest contracts, freedom from oppressive taxation, the encouragement of invention, and a dependable postal system were commonly recognized as needs in the debates of the Constitutional Convention. The resulting document, signed in Philadelphia in 1787, so effectively addressed those concerns that the same principles guide our modern economy.

These principles of freedom and fairness are the basis for consumer rights in the marketplace: the right to choose among products, services, and suppliers; the right to adequate information about what we buy; the right to expect that products offered for sale will conform to reasonable safety standards; the right to be heard; and the right to consumer education.

National Consumers Week 1987 is dedicated to reminding us that the exercise of these rights helps to maintain the vigor of our economic system -- creating positive pressure for better products, services, and warranties -- and that consumer education is a lifelong process.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim the week beginning April 19, 1987, as National Consumers Week. I urge consumers, businesses, educators, community organizations, labor unions, the media, and government officials to identify, emphasize, and promote activities during National Consumers Week that draw attention to the consumer's rights under the Constitution.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this nineteenth day of February, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eleventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 11:14 a.m., February 20, 1987]