One must always attempt to understand context when listening to a speech. I expect knee-jerk reactions from the left-wing talking heads, but not here in house. Colonials didn’t fear a “dirty radiation bomb” or a small pox attack, nor did they fear sudden obliteration from a nuclear weapon.
Yes, they feared lots of things in life, but they didn’t have the global situation we have now. In the context of Bush’s speech, he wasn’t referring to “fear” as it relates to the course of human existence, he was specifically referring to the fear of attack upon us by hostile forces from abroad.
In that context, by and large and with the exception of the Cuban Missile Crisis and ensuing “Cold War”, we have enjoyed freedom from fear due to the inability or desire of our border countries to annihilate us and our seas that provide wonderful distance from our enemies.