Glenn speaks to the NRA: "Yes I Will"

A chalkboard, history, unpasturized butter, and a shoe - there is only one man who could take all of these things, put them together in a speech, and get a standing ovation. That man is Glenn Beck.

Saturday night Glenn gave the keynote at the National Rifle Associations annual convention. He was introduced to the stage by the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, who told the crowd that "he shoots straight and gun owners couldn't have a better fan."

Glenn kicked off the speech by clearing the air about who he is endorsing for President of the United States - his shoe.

"Anyone but Barack Obama, including my shoe," Glenn said. "He'd do better than Barack Obama, I can make the case."

Next, Glenn discussed how the tragic death of Trayvon Martin is being used to target our second Amendment rights. "This government will never let a crisis go to waste," Glenn said, describing how this particular crisis is being used to vilify gun owners.

Glenn also touched on Al Sharpton for his public role the last few weeks in the Trayvon Martin case. George Zimmerman, the shooter, was charged Wednesday with second-degree murder in the Florida teen’s death.

“I saw him this week actually patting himself on the back,” Beck said of Sharpton. ” ‘I was the first to say he’s guilty and should go to jail.‘ When did that become something we’re proud of? When did that become something we wear as a badge of honor, to say ‘I was the first to try a man in the media? I was the first to say oh, that pesky Constitution. The right to a jury trial. I was the first to say guilty before innocent.‘ That’s crazy. The world is absolutely upside-down.”

Glenn compared what Sharpton and others on the left are doing now to what they did when the administration tried to hold the trial of some of the worst terrorist in New York City. "It was vital to show the world how great the our justice system is. …where are they now defending that great American justice system? Nowhere - let the world see the American justice system. It works," Glenn told the crowd.

This transitioned into a discussion of the lack of truth in the mainstream media today. "The media is not telling you the truth. That's why we started GBTV," Glenn said pointing out the coverage the case in Florida is getting compared to noncontroversial stories where guns were used for self-defense. Glenn cited six stories where people were able to defend and save their own lives because of their right to bear arms:

A woman in Oklahoma who was being attacked by a man with a knife.

A college student in Philadelphia who robbers began firing shots at because he didn't have any money.

A woman in Duluth, GA who was met by a man with a knife when she stepped out of her shower.

A woman in Albany, GA who was met by a man with a butcher knife and another with a gun when she walked into her office.

A double amputee who had his home invaded by a teen who fired two shots at him.

And finally, a 110lb Florida beauty queen, who was dragged upstairs to her bedroom by an intruder, where he was met by her fiancé, giving her just enough time to grab her pink 38.

The National Academy of Science recently published a review to find out which laws are really helping out when it comes to violent crime, suicide, and accidents. "Take a guess?," Glenn asked the crowd. "Out of 253 journalists, 99 books, 43 government publications and 80 gun control schemes, the number of laws that actually help - zero. Nobody reports anywhere when someone saves a life or stops a crime, because they're a responsible citizen with a gun. But, the chance of you getting hurt or killed by a gun in the hands of a responsible citizen - one in a million."

Glenn told the crowd that the name they all need to know and learn about when it comes to regulations is Cass Sunstein, who Glenn describes as "the most dangerous man in America."

"They're not going to take your gun away from you. They're just going to make it impossible for you to buy another one, impossible for you to own a bullet, buy a bullet, shoot it anywhere," Glenn said, while giving the example of what it is like for someone to try and buy a gun in New York City.

Glenn continued to give other examples of out of control regulation. Everything from digging from arrow heads and selling sea otters to a woman who was raided by NOAA with assault rifles. NOAA …the weather people.

Glenn also told the audience about how our government spent a year undercover with the Amish. "What's their crime? Unhomogenized, unpasteurized milk," Glenn said, joking about how they were ever shipping it across state lines.

Glenn happened to have spoken in Lancaster, PA Friday night, and brought some unpasteurized butter back with him - yes, across state lines.

So, how did we get here? "We don't know our own history," Glenn said, while referencing the famous picture of George Washington crossing the Delaware.

The original was painted in Germany where it was destroyed in an airstrike in 1944. Glenn gave the history of the recreated piece of art that resides in America, featuring not just George Washington, but Madison holding the flag, a woman, a Scott, and an African American. It was recreated by a man from Berlin in 1850, just after the 'Spring of Nations', which took place on February 23, 1848. What caused this eerily familiar sounding revolution to breakout across Europe on the 23rd? Just two days prior, on February 21st, 1848, Karl Marx published the Communist Manifesto.

Glenn explained the history lesson to the crowd using his trademark tool - the chalkboard.

"How does it relate to this picture? And what does history?" Glenn asked the crowd. "What is it screaming to America? It was communism that led to the Spring of Nations that broke out all over Europe, and one man lived in America, who was a German, went back and said 'No! that's the wrong direction'."

Glenn asked the crowd why would the painter include a woman, a farmer, an African American, all together in this one painting?

"Because, the average person, when linked together, can do anything," Glenn said while being met with applause.

"America is never about the finished product," he told the crowd, "it's about the journey, the process; it's about being what we are - each of us with different skills and different backgrounds, coming together and doing the right thing."

"We are headed for another spring of nations - history is crying out everywhere - it is telling us - it aint that hard guys - the answer is not that hard."

Glenn told the crowd about what George Washington did before fighting the Revolutionary War - he called for a National Day of Prayer and Fasting on May 17th. Glenn suggested that we do the same this May 17th.

"We beg God to protect this nation and His cause. Go home and tell your preachers and your rabbis," Glenn told the cheering crowd while continuing to tell the story of the amazing Crossing of the Delaware.

"The solutions that we need are right in front of us," Glenn transitioned. "We need to find a leader. We have Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney's our guy. I haven't been a Mitt Romney fan, but let me tell you something, I've done a lot of research. I've looked into his past. I've looked into all of his policies. I've looked into everything I can possibly find on Mitt Romney to see if there is something I can really get my arms around, and say 'Yes, the American people need to know this.' Here it is: Mitt Romney is my guy, because Mitt Romney is not a communist."

Glenn emphasized to the crowd how important it is going to be for every one of them to vote in the next election, while citing that 10 to 30 percent of every conservative organization is not registered to vote. "Clean up your own house first," Glenn said.

"We need God, we need education, the third thing we need is empowerment. We need entrepreneurship," Glenn explained telling the crowd that we must not only create, but we must also elevate others.

Glenn wrapped things up by talking about what conservatives have to do if they really want small government - be charitable. "Who is going to take care of the poor? Who's going to take care of those that are unemployed? Who will take care of the elderly? If you really want small government, let's be a group of people that when the press asks, 'Who is going to take care of the poor?' We don't say we will, we say we are. Our churches our neighborhoods are organized and taking care of the poor and those who cannot work."

“Barack Obama‘s winning slogan was 'Yes we can.' That’s the dumbest damn slogan I’ve ever heard,” Glenn said. “Don’t tell me what you can do. Will you do it? Will you do it? ‘Yes we can.’ What a bunch of crap that is.”

Glenn wrote the words “Yes I will” on the chalkboard.

“Yes I will,” he said. “Are you going to vote? ‘Yeah I could do that.’ Are you going to vote? ‘Yes I will.’”

“Will you be a man or a woman of honor?” he asked. “‘Yes I will.’ Will you seek equal justice for all? ‘Yes I will.’"

"Seek the truth. Have the courage to stand." Glenn concluded. "These are not the times that try mens souls, but they will be. The great news is, we'll be ready."

Many were live tweeting during the speech, here is what a few people had to say:

‏@RJBoisvert: @GBTV @glennbeck Inspiring speech at NRA by Glenn Beck! YES I WILL!

@HeadToToeHarlen: Will you stand or not? Great speaker! Thank you Glenn Beck for coming to our NRA convention! ALL IN!

@cbrown285: Glenn Beck "Mitt Romney is my guy because he is not a communist." that is a low bar of expectations but it is better than Obama #NRA

@nlasmus: The @glennbeck speech at the #NRA Convention is so inspiring! We the ppl hold the key to restoring our nation! National Day of Prayer May 17!

@EJRWatkins: @glennbeck LOVED video of NRA speech. You're 100% right. We ARE a covenant land and people!

Of course the usual haters were one the prowl, condemning Glenn for sharing stories of men and women protecting themselves from attackers using their 2nd Amendment rights (kind of proves his point about the left and the media, doesn't it?).

@CSGV: .@glennbeck stories of "justified" homicides, celebrating the deaths, #NRA Celebrating 18 yr old mom and baby being alive - evil

@CSGV: @glennbeck has now been a headline speaker at #NRA Convention for six years in a row. #Extremism #ows #labor #WarOnWomen #immigration #p2

 

From the moment the 33-year-old Thomas Jefferson arrived at the Continental Congress in Philadelphia in 1776, he was on the radical side. That caused John Adams to like him immediately. Then the Congress stuck Jefferson and Adams together on the five-man committee to write a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain, and their mutual admiration society began.

Jefferson thought Adams should write the Declaration. But Adams protested, saying, “It can't come from me because I'm obnoxious and disliked." Adams reasoned that Jefferson was not obnoxious or disliked, therefore he should write it. Plus, he flattered Jefferson, by telling him he was a great writer. It was a master class in passing the buck.

So, over the next 17 days, Jefferson holed up in his room, applying his lawyer skills to the ideas of the Enlightenment. He borrowed freely from existing documents like the Virginia Declaration of Rights. He later wrote that “he was not striving for originality of principle or sentiment." Instead, he hoped his words served as “an expression of the American mind."

It's safe to say he achieved his goal.

The five-man committee changed about 25 percent of Jefferson's first draft of the Declaration before submitting it to Congress. Then, Congress altered about one-fifth of that draft. But most of the final Declaration's words are Jefferson's, including the most famous passage — the Preamble — which Congress left intact. The result is nothing less than America's mission statement, the words that ultimately bind the nation together. And words that we desperately need to rediscover because of our boiling partisan rage.

The Declaration is brilliant in structure and purpose. It was designed for multiple audiences: the King of Great Britain, the colonists, and the world. And it was designed for multiple purposes: rallying the troops, gaining foreign allies, and announcing the creation of a new country.

The Declaration is structured in five sections: the Introduction, Preamble, the Body composed of two parts, and the Conclusion. It's basically the most genius breakup letter ever written.

In the Introduction, step 1 is the notificationI think we need to break up. And to be fair, I feel I owe you an explanation...

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another…

The Continental Congress felt they were entitled by “the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God" to “dissolve the political bands," but they needed to prove the legitimacy of their cause. They were defying the world's most powerful nation and needed to motivate foreign allies to join the effort. So, they set their struggle within the entire “Course of human events." They're saying, this is no petty political spat — this is a major event in world history.

Step 2 is declaring what you believe in, your standardsHere's what I'm looking for in a healthy relationship...

This is the most famous part of the Declaration; the part school children recite — the Preamble:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That's as much as many Americans know of the Declaration. But the Preamble is the DNA of our nation, and it really needs to be taken as a whole:

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

The Preamble takes us through a logical progression: All men are created equal; God gives all humans certain inherent rights that cannot be denied; these include the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; to protect those rights, we have governments set up; but when a government fails to protect our inherent rights, people have the right to change or replace it.

Government is only there to protect the rights of mankind. They don't have any power unless we give it to them. That was an extraordinarily radical concept then and we're drifting away from it now.

The Preamble is the justification for revolution. But note how they don't mention Great Britain yet. And again, note how they frame it within a universal context. These are fundamental principles, not just squabbling between neighbors. These are the principles that make the Declaration just as relevant today. It's not just a dusty parchment that applied in 1776.

Step 3 is laying out your caseHere's why things didn't work out between us. It's not me, it's you...

This is Part 1 of the Body of the Declaration. It's the section where Jefferson gets to flex his lawyer muscles by listing 27 grievances against the British crown. This is the specific proof of their right to rebellion:

He has obstructed the administration of justice...

For imposing taxes on us without our consent...

For suspending our own legislatures...

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us...

Again, Congress presented these “causes which impel them to separation" in universal terms to appeal to an international audience. It's like they were saying, by joining our fight you'll be joining mankind's overall fight against tyranny.

Step 4 is demonstrating the actions you took I really tried to make this relationship work, and here's how...

This is Part 2 of the Body. It explains how the colonists attempted to plead their case directly to the British people, only to have the door slammed in their face:

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury...

They too have been deaf to the voice of justice... We must, therefore... hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

This basically wrapped up America's argument for independence — we haven't been treated justly, we tried to talk to you about it, but since you refuse to listen and things are only getting worse, we're done here.

Step 5 is stating your intent — So, I think it's best if we go our separate ways. And my decision is final...

This is the powerful Conclusion. If people know any part of the Declaration besides the Preamble, this is it:

...that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved...

They left no room for doubt. The relationship was over, and America was going to reboot, on its own, with all the rights of an independent nation.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The message was clear — this was no pitchfork mob. These were serious men who had carefully thought through the issues before taking action. They were putting everything on the line for this cause.

The Declaration of Independence is a landmark in the history of democracy because it was the first formal statement of a people announcing their right to choose their own government. That seems so obvious to us now, but in 1776 it was radical and unprecedented.

In 1825, Jefferson wrote that the purpose of the Declaration was “not to find out new principles, or new arguments, never before thought of… but to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm… to justify ourselves in the independent stand we are compelled to take."

You're not going to do better than the Declaration of Independence. Sure, it worked as a means of breaking away from Great Britain, but its genius is that its principles of equality, inherent rights, and self-government work for all time — as long as we actually know and pursue those principles.

On June 7, 1776, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania State House, better known today as Independence Hall. Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee introduced a motion calling for the colonies' independence. The “Lee Resolution" was short and sweet:

Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

Intense debate followed, and the Congress voted 7 to 5 (with New York abstaining) to postpone a vote on Lee's Resolution. They called a recess for three weeks. In the meantime, the delegates felt they needed to explain what they were doing in writing. So, before the recess, they appointed a five-man committee to come up with a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain. They appointed two men from New England — Roger Sherman and John Adams; two from the middle colonies — Robert Livingston and Benjamin Franklin; and one Southerner — Thomas Jefferson. The responsibility for writing what would become the Declaration of Independence fell to Jefferson.

In the rotunda of the National Archives building in Washington, D.C., there are three original documents on permanent display: the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence. These are the three pillars of the United States, yet America barely seems to know them anymore. We need to get reacquainted — quickly.

In a letter to his friend John Adams in 1816, Jefferson wrote: “I like the dreams of the future, better than the history of the past."

America used to be a forward-looking nation of dreamers. We still are in spots, but the national attitude that we hear broadcast loudest across media is not looking toward the future with optimism and hope. In late 2017, a national poll found 59% of Americans think we are currently at the “lowest point in our nation's history that they can remember."

America spends far too much time looking to the past for blame and excuse. And let's be honest, even the Right is often more concerned with “owning the left" than helping point anyone toward the practical principles of the Declaration of Independence. America has clearly lost touch with who we are as a nation. We have a national identity crisis.

The Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

It is urgent that we get reacquainted with the Declaration of Independence because postmodernism would have us believe that we've evolved beyond the America of our founding documents, and thus they're irrelevant to the present and the future. But the Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

Today, much of the nation is so addicted to partisan indignation that "day-to-day" indignation isn't enough to feed the addiction. So, we're reaching into America's past to help us get our fix. In 2016, Democrats in the Louisiana state legislature tabled a bill that would have required fourth through sixth graders to recite the opening lines of the Declaration. They didn't table it because they thought it would be too difficult or too patriotic. They tabled it because the requirement would include the phrase “all men are created equal" and the progressives in the Louisiana legislature didn't want the children to have to recite a lie. Representative Barbara Norton said, “One thing that I do know is, all men are not created equal. When I think back in 1776, July the fourth, African Americans were slaves. And for you to bring a bill to request that our children will recite the Declaration, I think it's a little bit unfair to us. To ask our children to recite something that's not the truth. And for you to ask those children to repeat the Declaration stating that all men's are free. I think that's unfair."

Remarkable — an elected representative saying it wouldn't be fair for students to have to recite the Declaration because “all men are not created equal." Another Louisiana Democrat explained that the government born out of the Declaration “was used against races of people." I guess they missed that part in school where they might have learned that the same government later made slavery illegal and amended the Constitution to guarantee all men equal protection under the law. The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments were an admission of guilt by the nation regarding slavery, and an effort to right the wrongs.

Yet, the progressive logic goes something like this: many of the men who signed the Declaration of Independence, including Thomas Jefferson who wrote it, owned slaves; slavery is evil; therefore, the Declaration of Independence is not valid because it was created by evil slave owners.

It's a sad reality that the left has a very hard time appreciating the universal merits of the Declaration of Independence because they're so hung up on the long-dead issue of slavery. And just to be clear — because people love to take things out of context — of course slavery was horrible. Yes, it is a total stain on our history. But defending the Declaration of Independence is not an effort to excuse any aspect of slavery.

Okay then, people might say, how could the Founders approve the phrase “All men are created equal," when many of them owned slaves? How did they miss that?

They didn't miss it. In fact, Thomas Jefferson included an anti-slavery passage in his first draft of the Declaration. The paragraph blasted King George for condoning slavery and preventing the American Colonies from passing legislation to ban slavery:

He has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights to life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating and carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere... Determined to keep open a market where men should be bought and sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce.

We don't say “execrable" that much anymore. It means, utterly detestable, abominable, abhorrent — basically very bad.

Jefferson was upset when Georgia and North Carolina threw up the biggest resistance to that paragraph. Ultimately, those two states twisted Congress' arm to delete the paragraph.

Still, how could a man calling the slave trade “execrable" be a slaveowner himself? No doubt about it, Jefferson was a flawed human being. He even had slaves from his estate in Virginia attending him while he was in Philadelphia, in the very apartment where he was writing the Declaration.

Many of the Southern Founders deeply believed in the principles of the Declaration yet couldn't bring themselves to upend the basis of their livelihood. By 1806, Virginia law made it more difficult for slave owners to free their slaves, especially if the owner had significant debts as Jefferson did.

At the same time, the Founders were not idiots. They understood the ramifications of signing on to the principles described so eloquently in the Declaration. They understood that logically, slavery would eventually have to be abolished in America because it was unjust, and the words they were committing to paper said as much. Remember, John Adams was on the committee of five that worked on the Declaration and he later said that the Revolution would never be complete until the slaves were free.

Also, the same generation that signed the Declaration started the process of abolition by banning the importation of slaves in 1807. Jefferson was President at the time and he urged Congress to pass the law.

America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough.

The Declaration took a major step toward crippling the institution of slavery. It made the argument for the first time about the fundamental rights of all humans which completely undermined slavery. Planting the seeds to end slavery is not nearly commendable enough for leftist critics, but you can't discount the fact that the seeds were planted. It's like they started an expiration clock for slavery by approving the Declaration. Everything that happened almost a century later to end slavery, and then a century after that with the Civil Rights movement, flowed from the principles voiced in the Declaration.

Ironically for a movement that calls itself progressive, it is obsessed with retrying and judging the past over and over. Progressives consider this a better use of time than actually putting past abuses in the rearview and striving not to be defined by ancestral failures.

It can be very constructive to look to the past, but not when it's used to flog each other in the present. Examining history is useful in providing a road map for the future. And America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough. But it's right there, the original, under glass. The ink is fading, but the words won't die — as long as we continue to discuss them.

'Good Morning Texas' gives exclusive preview of Mercury One museum

Screen shot from Good Morning Texas

Mercury One is holding a special exhibition over the 4th of July weekend, using hundreds of artifacts, documents and augmented reality experiences to showcase the history of slavery — including slavery today — and a path forward. Good Morning Texas reporter Paige McCoy Smith went through the exhibit for an exclusive preview with Mercury One's chief operating officer Michael Little on Tuesday.

Watch the video below to see the full preview.

Click here to purchase tickets to the museum (running from July 4 - 7).

Over the weekend, journalist Andy Ngo and several other apparent right-leaning people were brutally beaten by masked-gangs of Antifa protesters in Portland, Oregon. Short for "antifascist," Antifa claims to be fighting for social justice and tolerance — by forcibly and violently silencing anyone with opposing opinions. Ngo, who was kicked, punched, and sprayed with an unknown substance, is currently still in the hospital with a "brain bleed" as a result of the savage attack. Watch the video to get the details from Glenn.