Reasons for Optimism
James Edwards, American Renaissance, November 8, 2023
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Adapted from remarks given at the 20th American Renaissance conference, August 12, 2023.
This is actually my third time to speak before an American Renaissance gathering. And every time Jared calls me and asks me to speak, I think to myself, “Damn. A lot of people must have turned him down this year.” But I will do my level best not to blow it today — or at least not fall off the stage.
But I should quickly make mention of the fact that one Samuel Jared Taylor has made more guest appearances on my weekly radio program than any other challenger, and as you might imagine, we’ve become friends over that time.
So, when I was in Washington back in January of 2017 with two press credentials to see Donald Trump sworn in as president of the United States, who do you think I asked to join me? Of course, if you’re in Washington and you’ve got a press credential like that, you’re going to ask Jared. And so there we were, seated about as far away from the president as I am seated from Jared right now, as he was sworn in and took that oath. And the press recognized Jared on sight that day and came to interview him. I think they were a little bit confused and perhaps a little bit disconcerted as to how we were amongst them that day.
The last time I spoke at AmRen was in 2016 at the spring conference that year. I had just interviewed Donald Trump, Jr., and the media were apoplectic about that for at least a year. Actually, the New York Times and the Washington Post may still be writing articles about it. There are never really any updates, but that doesn’t keep it from being breaking news.
But I said with confidence that year that Donald Trump would be elected president of the United States. In the spring of 2016, a lot of people didn’t believe that, even people who wanted him to be. And the message I’m going to share with you today is one that I share with an equal amount of confidence.
2016 was only eight years ago, but we are a world away from where we were then. And in many respects, perhaps inadvertently, it is because of Donald Trump that all these changes have come, which will present us with opportunities that previously did not exist.
And let me also assure you before I continue, that any youthful naivete that I may have once possessed has long since been zapped. I have been attacked by virtually every media outlet in the world at one time or another — an incessant drumbeat of ridicule, slander, and condemnation. I have an unblemished record of setbacks and defeats. I have been denounced by name and on the record by the United States Congress. I have been banned by every social media platform and every credit card processing company on the planet.
But I’ve also been right about a lot of things over that time. And I’m still brimming with zeal because I believe that our cause is just and that things are going to turn around for us. Things do change. Mark Weber is a man for whom I have an immense amount of respect. He made a very simple but profound remark during his most recent address at the Scandza Forum. “Things won’t always be this way.”
When I first got my start in activism and advocacy, like all young lads, I thought that I could singlehandedly turn the rudder. The reason we hadn’t won yet was simply because I hadn’t arrived on the scene. But it didn’t take me too long to figure out that this nut was going to be a little bit more difficult to crack than that. I quickly dispensed with that thinking and adopted the mindset that I would happily serve as the faithful shepherd of whatever flock I’ve got.
But now I am beginning to think that we have a real puncher’s chance of witnessing something amazing coming about in the very near term. This corrupt and glutinous empire that we live under will not stand the test of time. No empire ever does. The United States won’t be an exception. That much I can tell you. It is unfortunate for all of us in the room that we just so happen to be born during the nadir of the American experiment. We have spent a lifetime watching things get progressively worse. And when you hear the establishment media speak of progress, believe me, something just got progressively worse.
We’ve watched for years as society at large has circled down the drain with no end in sight. But then inexplicably, and within the past couple of years especially, whites in middle America started to show a pulse again. Make no mistake about it, the GOP base — the average Trump voter — is showing signs of an emerging racial consciousness. And there are mountains of statistical data and anecdotal evidence to back up my claim.
But first take a trip back with me, if you would, to the late 2000s, right around the time when people like me and Jared and Peter Brimelow were making our final appearances as guests on CNN, Fox News, C-SPAN, and similar mainstream outlets. Yes, they used to have us on. They still talk about us. They just don’t talk to us anymore, and there’s a difference in that.
But if you look at the state of so-called conservatism at that time, you saw disaffected whites being spoken for by people like Glenn Beck. Thankfully those days are gone — the days of the Tea Party. Not that the Tea Partiers themselves were necessarily ridiculous, but the people who claimed to represent the movement most certainly were. Peter Brimelow and I were interviewed by CNN in tandem. “Are whites racially oppressed?” was the question. But it was in response to the Glenn Beck rally that he had in Washington at the Lincoln Memorial.
And this is what was going on at the time inside the base that would eventually become the Trump base. Glenn Beck was saying things like, “Here we are, and I stand here now where the great Martin Luther King Jr. once stood. But allow me to take a step down because I have no right to be on the same pedestal as Dr. Reverend King.” We can’t win with a guy like that, which is what led me to write the book, Racism Schmacism: How Liberals Use the R-Word. Back then, people still didn’t get it, and it was written on an elementary level for an introductory type of purpose. But people didn’t get what our opponents meant by the word “racism.” They didn’t mean it the way that a lot of people think they do. They just want you to retreat from the field. They spew out accusations like that to keep you spinning your wheels rather than focusing on actually accomplishing anything.
But people get it now — largely, I think, because of Trump. Trump has been denounced on a virtually daily basis as a “racist,” a “bigot,” a “white supremacist,” or a “fascist” every single day since the day he came down that escalator in Trump Tower. I think it numbed people to the sting that these “shut-up” words once had. The left has overplayed it so much. Trump could have cured cancer or walked on water and the headline would have been, “Donald Trump is a racist.” People are increasingly beginning to understand what the late Bob Whitaker was talking about. These people are not anti-racist. They are anti-white. We’ve come a long way on that front in a short amount of time.
Where are we now? To answer that, I’m going to share with you some stats and some data that will help gird your loins. Here’s a headline. “Seventy-three percent of Trump voters think Democrats are trying to replace white people with immigrants and people of color who share their political views, shocking new poll shows.” Now those are numbers we can win with. Seventy-three percent of tens of millions of people, and these people are less naive about race in the post-George Floyd-Joe Biden era.
Blake Masters, who ran for senate in Arizona in 2022, openly blamed gun violence on “black people, frankly,” according to one headline at the time.
And here’s the thing about telling the truth: Once some people start to do it, other people start to do it, too. It can be contagious like that. Tulsi Gabbard, maybe the last honest Democrat — or former Democrat, as it were — has recently added the term “anti-white” to her own vocabulary.
There’s nothing wrong with biding our time right now because people are rapidly catching up to us. We don’t have to go out and do anything because people are getting to us on their own schedule. But to what extent are they catching up? In my estimation, the ground is shifting as we speak, and it’s observable in real time.
As we’re now beginning to see, millions of white Republican voters believe that having a strong leader is more important than protecting “our Democracy” with a capital D, as the Washington Post now writes it. According to a recent Yahoo News/YouGov poll, red-state Trump voters are now more likely to say that they would be better than worse off if their state seceded, a topic we will address shortly.
But it’s not just here that we’re seeing these stirrings. Hungary’s leader, Viktor Orban, bashed Western Europeans for, quote, “mixing with non-Europeans,” and said Hungarians do not want to become a mixed race. Orban is not a failed candidate for the United States senate, and he is not a former member of congress. He is the sitting prime minister of a major European nation. Meanwhile, people like Ben Sasse, thank God, are finished. They have been replaced. Liz Cheney got rolled by 30 points. The Bush/Cheney/Clinton dynasty is over. Poof, they’re gone. And it would have been unfathomable to imagine that as recently as 2015.
Let’s look at even more polling data. One poll published just after Biden’s inauguration found that 87 percent of Trump voters are worried about anti-white discrimination, 80 percent of Trump voters reject the so-called “white privilege” theory, 64 percent of Trump voters believe that their race and ethnicity are important to their identity, and 40 percent of Trump voters believe that their race and ethnicity is extremely important to their sense of identity.
Why is all this happening now? Our ideas are no more correct or right today than they were ten years ago, twenty years ago, fifty years ago, or a hundred years ago. But it’s just in the past two or three years — not just during the Trump era itself — that so much of this has crystallized.
What happened during that time that might have caused this nascent sense of white racial solidarity to develop? I’ve got a list:
1) Since the Summer of St. George, at least 200 Confederate monuments have been destroyed by an orgy of mob violence and the actions of left-wing governments. This was an all-out assault on American heritage that ran from Robert E. Lee to the Founding Fathers to Christian missionaries.
2) Donald Trump and his supporters have been censored and purged from the internet by Big Tech.
3) Six months of non-stop violence by Antifa and Black Lives Matter, from the death of George Floyd to the 2020 election. The FBI and the DOJ have turned a blind eye to this violence.
4) The FBI and the DOJ have, in fact, become weaponized against Trump and his supporters. They’ve launched a domestic war on terror against non-existent insurgents.
5) The New York Times and the establishment media have gone beyond whatever level of bad they were in previous years to the point where we now have racial attacks on whites that have become a never-ending bombardment.
6) The definition of racism has been changed, and conservatives now understand that “racist” simply means any white person, at least the way it is used by the Left and all-too-many RINOs and establishment conservatives today. The Left believes that all white people are complicit in perpetuating systemic racism and white supremacy.
7) The political, cultural, and corporate establishment have embraced “equity,” a concept that punishes whites on the basis of race.
8) Too many people to count have been doxed, fired, and silenced for diversity of opinion.
9) Donald Trump told his followers that the 2020 election was outright stolen from him and 70 percent believe that to be true.
10) And finally, there has been a simultaneous push to indoctrinate children with Critical Race Theory and transgender propaganda from kindergarten onward.
Those ten points were compiled by my good friend Brad Griffin, which I borrowed with permission today. Unlike Dr. King, when I plagiarize someone, I always want to give them proper attribution. Brad Griffin does a great job at Occidental Dissent. He has an uncanny knack for writing things that I’m seeing and feeling.
But what sort of impact do you think all these things have had on white racial attitudes? Well, according to another incredible poll, nine out of ten Trump voters say that white people are under attack in America to a certain degree. Now these are their polls, mind you, not mine!
And I don’t think the toothpaste is going to go back in the tube on these things. Having a developing sense of white racial consciousness is becoming en vogue. Does it even make sense to label us hate groups or extremists anymore? According to polling data, we’re part of the mainstream now. White nationalists, if you want to use that term, are polling better among Trump supporters than journalists. For years, our collective has been toiling in the vineyards and it’s now beginning to bear fruit.
But sometimes you must wait for the right conditions to present themselves, and for your enemies to overplay their hand. Now you might be wondering, well what if the enemy sees what you’re saying today, and they pump the brakes a little bit? They can’t do it. They won’t do it. They are so hopped up on hatred of our people that there are no brakes on their train. They will continue to accelerate the inevitable.
Here are some more poll numbers. Ninety-two percent of Trump voters think that the mainstream media is identical to the Democratic party. Eighty-six percent want to build a wall. Seventy-seven percent feel as though they’ve been gagged by political correctness. Sixty-two percent want to deport all illegal aliens.
And again, when I refer to “Trump voters,” you know who I’m talking about — white Republicans, middle America.
Attitudes are changing. When you see someone like Ron DeSantis correctly say in a press conference that the Waukesha Christmas parade massacre was an anti-white attack, which he did, pat yourself on the back, because you did that. These politicians are just trying to keep up with where their voters are now.
I’ve got a theory on human nature that’s somewhere in between pragmatism and cynicism — I believe that there are very few people on either side of the political spectrum who have inflexible beliefs. Those of us in this room are going to rise or fall with our beliefs, come what may. Certainly, there is a group of people on the other side of the political spectrum who want to see us destroyed at all costs.
But most people in the middle are simply looking after themselves and their families. They will do and say whatever they need to do and say to get by in life. They’ll take the path of least resistance. They’ll conform to whatever the current trends and fashions of society are. Well, guess what? They’re going to do the exact same thing when we regain control of the levers of institutional power.
I would rather, of course, have everyone be true believers, especially our elected officials and titans of industry. But they’re going to fall in line whenever the day comes that we can exert more leverage than our opponents. It’s just that simple. Change isn’t always as far away as it seems. As I mentioned, politicians are already trying to keep up with the base on many of our issues. So too are conservative influencers like Charlie Kirk and Matt Walsh. They are saying and making points now that got people like us kicked out of their meetings and events just a couple of years ago. It’s already happening in fits and starts.
But here are some more things that used to be taboo and only used to be discussed in gatherings such as this that we’ve all watched enter into the conservative mainstream over the past few years. We have sitting members of congress saying things like “journalists are the enemy of the people” or “abolish the FBI.” Donald Trump has done so much to help us corrode trust in these corrupt institutions. He’s really accelerated things by decades in this regard. Black-on-white crime, the Great Replacement, the term “anti-white,” white advocacy in general, things like opposing affirmative action, raced-based hiring, opposition of Critical Race Theory, exposing the SPLC and the ADL.
Humpty Dumpty isn’t going to be put back together again. And it’s not just because whites are beginning to have this development of racial consciousness. It’s because diversity and multiculturalism have already made the decision for us, whether we want it to or not. We’re on a one-way track here. The United States is comprised of many squabbling nations that are partitioned into halves. To keep it simple, think of the red and the blue state America. Not only can these two sides not agree on a similar faith, language, customs, folkways, and heroes — all the things that make a cohesive society — but they can’t even agree on what a man or a woman is anymore. You can rest assured that time is short for such a society. It will not go on forever.
There’s a considerable amount of stress being placed on the system right now, not the least of which involves the many arrests and indictments of Donald Trump. This is a man getting hauled into court up and down the Eastern seaboard. It’s unprecedented in American history. I’m not just saying that nobody alive today has seen it before. Nobody in the history of the Republic, from Jamestown to Plymouth Rock, has seen anything like this before. Blue state America is attempting to put the president of red state America in prison.
As things stand today, we’re looking at Trump, who is currently leading in the polls over Biden, winning the Republican nomination, being convicted on multiple felonies, and being sent to prison for multiple lifetimes during the 2024 election cycle. Given these circumstances, it is almost impossible to wrap our minds around what next year may bring.
But this scenario and the chain of events it could unleash is going to be something to behold. I think we’re in for something next year that could ultimately change the course of history. To be clear and to reiterate, the current president of the United States is using the Justice Department to take out his chief rival in the next election. You cannot exaggerate how radical that is.
As Brad Griffin has further argued:
It could be a constitutional crisis. A vote for Trump is a vote to bring this to a climax. After January 6th, the Democrats will never accept the legitimacy of a Trump victory and presidency. The Deep State will never accept a Trump presidency in light of his threats. Trump supporters will never accept the illegitimacy of his incarceration or removal from office as the result of this witch hunt. No one is going to take the offramp. All of the polarization and animosity that has been building up for decades could soon boil over.
I agree with that. Events are moving at a faster pace than ever before. We are feeling the pull of the waterfall.
Let’s recap. The leading Republican presidential candidate, the former president, is being indicted hither, tither, and yon. The biggest land war in Europe since World War II has broken out and it can spiral out of control at any moment. Don’t forget to keep your eyes on Taiwan and China, too. The “normies” have radicalized in the best sense of the word over the past three years under Joe Biden. Most people in the country now expect there to be a civil war in their lifetimes. Polarization is off the charts.
The “Greatest” and “Silent” generations are in the graveyards. The post-World War II order is destabilizing. The entire system is losing its legitimacy in the eyes of millions of people. They’re poised for a revolutionary change. Revolutionary changes like this can occur very gradually and then very rapidly, all at once. Public trust in institutions is simply vanishing amongst huge swathes of the population. People representing half the country have lost their confidence in the media, the military, federal law enforcement, the judicial system, and even elections themselves. There’s a deep distrust, to say the least, of the federal government. This is necessary before any real change can occur. You must divest yourself of this trust in these institutions and abjure the realm.
And this is another gift, I believe, that Trump has inadvertently given to us. I don’t think he meant to do this, to be clear, but it was the inevitable outcome of his presence on the political stage. Trump has repeatedly said that he cannot get a fair trial in New York or Washington D.C., and he’s absolutely right.
The law has been entirely weaponized. Look at what’s happening in Charlottesville today, over six years after the Unite the Right rally, where you have men only now being arrested for lighting tiki torches. They’re facing five years in prison for exercising their First Amendment rights. Meanwhile, at the same event on the same day at the same time, there was a black man with an improvised flame thrower who was actively firing it toward people, and to my knowledge, he never had a problem. And that’s what the law is now. The only thing that matters when you go to court in the blue states these days is whose side you’re on.
All of this demonstrates that Trump and his supporters simply cannot get a fair trial or receive fair justice. At this late stage of decline, I believe reforming the existing system is utterly out of the question.
And I didn’t feel this way in 2017, but I feel this way now and I have for some years now. I’ve come to the point where I don’t want to Make America Great Again, as Trump and his followers insist. I want to leave it behind and learn from the mistakes. And the legitimacy of the system must evaporate before that change can occur. Thankfully, we’re well on our way.
People have lost their confidence in the system. Both sides see each other as mortal enemies in an existential conflict. The divide even as recently as four or five years ago during Trump’s first term wasn’t nearly as wide as it is now. Things will not be going back to normal. An event must occur that alleviates this growing pressure, this stress, one way or another. And I think we’re due for an upheaval or a war or some sort of an economic realignment. The discontent that is boiling just below the surface will need to be vented.
It is becoming increasingly clear, surely by now, that we cannot vote ourselves out of this. This country is dysgenic in many ways and degenerate in just about every way. Blue-state America is trying to put the president of red state America in prison. Conservative state legislatures routinely pass laws only to have them be overturned by rogue federal judges from other parts of the country.
But if these things can further widen the divide, then we should welcome it, because at least that gives us the opportunity to consider alternative solutions. The Balkanization of America may not be a pleasant prospect, but it has happened to many different nations throughout the course of history. Why should we be an exception?
Under the present arrangement, we have to understand that our people have no future on this continent. If we continue down this track, we have no future. That is a demographic certainty. Our salvation may very well lie in separation. And if a national divorce — you can call it secession if you so choose — is what is in our future, then we might as well begin to seriously consider it, as I have. I had the opportunity to write the opening chapter of a recently published book, The Honorable Cause. The question of a national divorce is examined through the lens of Southern identity, but the ideas that I and my 11 co-authors put into this are applicable to all people.
It debuted on April 1 on Amazon at #11 in the nationalism category and #19 in political science. And it held its ground in the top 20 for over three months. I’m very proud that it has been favorably reviewed by so many of our movement stalwarts such as Counter-Currents, The Occidental Observer, The Barnes Review, a number of international magazines and journals, and of course, American Renaissance. Thanks to Roger Devlin who wrote the review.
It’s a serious book that raises a serious question. Why did this book and its message find an audience now? I’ll tell you. A recent Rasmussen Poll found that 47 percent of Republican voters support a national divorce. I told you that we would come back to this. More and more Republicans are now supporting these ideas. Whether it’s opposing anti-whitism, or the Great Replacement, or supporting a national divorce as even mainstream Republican figures like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene do, our “extremist” ideas sure seem to be going mainstream.
The country is more polarized now than at any point since the War Between the States. We have irreconcilable differences, to put it mildly. Millions of people are open to secession and the public is beginning to accept this. Secession movements are sprouting up all over the country and not just in theory. You may have heard that parts of Oregon are voting on a county level to break off and join Idaho, for example.
But did you know that this happened in Texas just this last summer? Salon magazine recently wrote that, “Texas Republicans got a taste of just how far right their party has become. At the state GOP convention, delegates officially declared Joe Biden an illegitimate president and proposed repealing the 1965 Voting Rights Act.”
That’s not the Republican party of Massachusetts, which competes sort of like the Washington Generals do. This is the biggest state Republican party in the country — the Republican party of Texas. And yes, the topic of secession seems to have a heartbeat in Texas.
Rolling Stone reported that Texas state representative Bryan Slaton had introduced a bill that would place a referendum for Texas’s secession from the United States on the 2024 ballot. House Bill 3596 would have allowed Texans to vote on, quote, “Whether or not the state should investigate the possibility of Texas independence and present potential plans to the legislature.”
In a statement, Slaton wrote, “After decades of continuous abuse of our rights and liberties by the federal government, it is time for the people of Texas to make their voices heard.” Do I think that it’s going to happen next year? No, I don’t. But the fact of the matter is that it’s not just people at the Sons of Confederate Veterans talking about this. These are current and former elected officials in county governments and in state legislatures.
I’ve got one more example that I can almost guarantee you have not heard about. Did you know that the question of secession has already reached the floor of the New Hampshire State House? A Portland Press Herald headline reads, “New Hampshire House Votes on Seceding from the United States.” The proposal called for, “Independence from the United States and all references to the United States in the New Hampshire State Constitution statutes and regulations be nullified.”
Now as you probably guessed, it failed, or you really would have heard about it. But 13 lawmakers did vote in favor of it, and in doing so himself, Rep. Matthew Santonastaso argued that it was just a matter of time before the Union collapses. “National divorce is going to happen. It’s inevitable, and we have an opportunity to get ahead of this,” he said.
Oregon, Texas, New Hampshire — these are mere tremors right now, but something is happening.
Secession, by the way, is polling at 20 percent in New Hampshire. That’s one out of five the last I checked. Our issues are no more or less valid today than in previous decades or generations, as I said earlier, but the timing wasn’t right. Conditions weren’t favorable yet, but they’re getting there.
The political rhetoric has become so much more strident and apocalyptic on both sides. The present trends of cultural disintegration, polarization, and political instability cannot continue forever. Once it reaches a certain threshold, instability devolves into conflict, and conflict resolves polarization by vanquishing one side or the other and establishing a new normal. That’s what’s coming, and we don’t need to do anything to hasten the day. We must not engage in or advocate violence in any way, as the system is rapidly collapsing and losing credibility and legitimacy on a daily basis.
Why haven’t we won already? Many people agree with us now. Conditions are becoming more favorable. So why haven’t we turned the corner yet? Not so fast. There are a lot of reasons for that, not the least of which is the fact that our people are still entirely too comfortable. Our people are going to have to suffer a little bit more first. I don’t think our people — not the people here today, but our race at large — deserve some sort of deus ex machina event to bail us out of the mistakes that we’ve made. I think we’re going to have to learn from them. We may have to learn some tough lessons. Although, of course, we might hope that Trump will be like Samson and bring the house down with him.
But things are rarely that simple and we’re going to have to be tested. We’re going to have to be made tough again. Rare is the man who is willing to take risks when he is relatively content. But a group of people that suffer together become bound together. An event is going to have to happen first. I don’t think it will be quite as easy as Trump’s election or imprisonment, although I think that’s going to take us further down the road. But an economic collapse here, a nuclear war there — hey, who knows?
Here’s the point: Just wait until all these people who agree with us now and who are becoming a little bit braver are faced with the reality that they can’t pay the rent, feed themselves and their families, and keep their kids warm. Not every crisis like that leads to a favorable resolution, but some crises can make it possible and that’s all that we can realistically hope for. All we can hope for is a chance.
This bloated system that governs us will not go down easily. This system of soft totalitarianism is going to get much more rigid when real pressure begins to be applied against it. That is when you would do very well to remember that you are not an individual, but part of a collective that exists within a continuum that links us to our distant ancestors and our future descendants. Our individual lives mean very little compared to something so grand and so wonderful.
And if you allow yourselves to get separated from all of the things that make us who we are and who you are — our traditions, our heroes, our holidays, our faith, our culture — then you’re basically dead already. So, what are you worried about? This is something that should steel your nerves.
And sometimes things get hard. You may lose friends. You may have problems with work. You may lose a job. Hey, that’s a tough thing. Sometimes these things happen. But whatever comes, never betray a brother. Never behave in a way that brings dishonor to our cause and to our people, especially when you’re under attack. It is an animating thing to engage in the struggle of one’s time. It stirs that Faustian spirit that exists within the hearts and the minds of the men of the West.
Great men are never made except through great trials. Adversities aren’t obstacles, but rather our greatest opportunities to get better, forge our character, work harder, become smarter, and prove our worth.
I know it sounds cliche. It is cliche. But the future hasn’t been written yet, and during our finite time on earth we have a say in how it goes. You should welcome that. We tend to see things only through the lens of our very short lifetimes. It is sometimes hard to see before or beyond our personal experiences.
I’m sure that at some point during the 700 years that the Iberian Peninsula was occupied by the Muslims, those people surely must have thought that the end had come. But it did get better, and when they finally unshackled themselves, it launched the age of exploration, and our people conquered the world.
The Aztec Empire was at the height of its power about five minutes before Cortez landed on the shore armed with 600 men and a burn-the-boats resolve. And I’m sure that the people of Russia — those beautiful people who suffered and were murdered and starved by the Bolsheviks and the Communists — thought that the sun was never going to rise again. But suffice it to say, there’s a new sheriff in town now.
Am I comparing apples to oranges? Am I oversimplifying it? Maybe. Those were different times, different people, and different situations. But things do change, and they will change here. We’re going to need a leader. We’re going to need someone who can harness the energy. Revolutions are top-down. They are not bottom-up. We’re going to need that man to step into the moment, that moment where time and circumstance intersect, and change can occur. That intersection where you find the place where the message meets the people.
I know not everybody can be upfront. I understand everybody’s situation is different. Not everyone has the same opportunities to serve. But everyone can support or serve in some way. There are so many people at this podium this weekend and in the crowd itself who are deserving of your support. Do your duty to be part of the team. Get involved in whatever ways you can. It will make you feel good to be a stakeholder.
I have been at this my entire adult life. I’m in my early 40s now. My wife is here with me today. She has been with me since before the very first step. Never let anyone tell you that having these righteous and heartfelt beliefs will resign you to a chaotic or dysfunctional home life. I have three young kids. I have led a full life already in many ways. I’ve lived, I’ve loved, I’ve fought.
It has been a remarkable and rewarding journey thus far with precious few regrets. I do think things are going to turn around — in fact, I’m convinced that it will. I think that our people are too talented and too wonderful to go out this way, and frankly, the current system is too absurd and dysfunctional to endure. I can’t tell you the exact time or place or the catalyst that will bring about our pivot. But I want you to believe that a window of opportunity will one day open that will allow order to be restored.
But if I’m wrong, and if we are about to enter into the last good fight that Western civilization will ever know, then let us meet it with the same resolve that the Confederate General Patrick Cleburne met the battles of his time when he said, “If this cause that is so dear to my heart is doomed to fail, I pray heaven will let me fall with it, while my face is toward the enemy and my arm is battling for that which I know to be right.”
Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.