Glenn was invited to speak at David Horowitz’s West Coast Retreat in California over the weekend, pressing the importance of culture and American history to a large and engaged audience.
In his opening remarks, Glenn laid out exactly why culture was so important, pulling out a line from the Disneyland Prospectus he won at auction in 2010.
The Prospectus says Disneyland will be based upon and dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and hard facts that have created America. And it will be uniquely equipped to dramatize those dreams and facts and send them forth as a source of courage and inspiration to all the world.
“That is what all of us must take up and do. We have a story to tell. We have the greatest story the world has ever heard – the story of real freedom,” Glenn explained.
Through the power of technology, anyone who wants to tell a story – whether through music, film, writing, etc – can do so. But Glenn stressed the importance of the story itself. He ran through tales from throughout American history, from Edison to Tokyo Rose to Woodrow Wilson, that many have never heard. He said if these stories, and the truths within them, are told in a way that connects and resonates with people, it can cause a shift in the culture and the way people think.
“Progressives are nothing more than patient communists. And so we now are building a movement that is also patient. Must be patient. Must know that we have allowed over a hundred years of damage to be done and there is much to repair,” Glenn said.
After running through stories from different periods of history, Glenn admitted that it’s easy to think that it’s too hard to fight when things are dark – but everyone must make a choice to stand and to live.
“The good guys win in the end because good is a much more powerful force. But it requires people to stand and give it all,” Glenn said.
“Dietrich Bonhoeffer won. Martin Luther King won. Gahndi won. Jesus won,” he added.
He encouraged people to think back to 1940s Germany. While that may have been one of the world’s darkest hours, people chose to stand up and fight back against Hitler and the Nazis. Just a few years later, the nation of Israel was founded. Could anyone have seen that coming when Hitler was rising to power and extinguishing the lives of million of Jews in Europe?
“Stand back and watch the awesome power of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,” Glenn said.
But it’s not easy to stand. It requires you to know who you are and what you believe, and it requires you to be an example to others. To paraphrase ‘Star Wars’, it’s easy to give into the Dark Side. Glenn told a personal story of his own internal battles between love and hatred.
“One day I was facing a really tough day and I had two ways to go. I could let my political foes have it and I could smear them, or I could let them continue to do what they were doing and I could let that battle be fought by a power far greater than me and believe in Divine Providence and not become someone I despised. But it was very hard and it would have been a very easy win.”
In order to stay focused on the right path, Glenn carried a compass that George Washington used during his time as a surveyor and repeated the mantra “Stay true, just get through it.” While he was holding the compass, he found a thumbprint that he believes came from George Washington, and he imagined Washington rubbing the same compass and repeating the same mantra as he faced his own struggles.
“Stay true just get through it.”
Watch the full speech below: