Glenn Beck: America Alone



America Alone by Mark Steyn

GLENN: Mark Steyn, he's the author of "America Alone" is with us now.  Mark, welcome to the program.

STEYN:  Thank you.  Always good to be with you.

GLENN:  We wanted to talk a lot about Islamic stuff and Petraeus and et cetera, et cetera but this story has come up with these teenage girls just beating the snot out of another girl and doing it for fame and fortune and my theory is, my thesis that I would like to forward to you is we're not that different.

STEYN:  Well, I think we have got problems and in part, you know, the whole Western decadence/Islamic extremism thing are dancing this sort of lopsided Tango together.  The more incidents you have like this, the more Muslim women in the West conclude that, you know, why would we want to be emancipated Western women if it's just the freedom to behave like knuckle driving folks.  The two things are related.

GLENN:  I mean, here's where I think we're not that different.  I believe they're worshipping a false god.  They are worshipping a god that they understand tells them to kill in his name.  And I think it is a -- these extremists have taken God and just built him into something that he is not.  We are worshipping a false god and that's fame and fortune.

STEYN:  Yeah, I think that is a point, too, that in fact there's a sort of deadness about celebrity cultures that even if you think it's pathetic and worthless to be Paris Hilton or Lindsay Lohan or any of these people.  I mean, I feel rather sorry for somebody like Lindsay Lohan who was kind of moderately talented five or six years ago and then becomes a joke figure.  But you can't underestimate the appeal of it.  And I think in a sense what both these things have done for them is that they arise in a vacuum.  If you are raised in school and you are not taught to have any real heroes, then the idea of just sort of electronic celebrity, beating somebody up, putting it on YouTube, I think you can sort of see the rationale for that.  Also I think --

GLENN:  Hang on.  Wait, wait, wait, wait.  Go back to that because I never thought of that.  We don't really have any real heroes anymore.  We're not taught about real heroes.  Everybody's fake.  Everybody is flawed.  Everybody isn't what they said they were.

STEYN:  No, and I think we venerate self-esteem if you listen to most of these school mission statements, they venerate self-esteem unrelated from achievement which tells you something right from the word go anyway.  In other words, I think esteem, self-esteem and general esteem should be related to what you accomplish but the idea that just you, whatever you do are worth celebrating in and of yourself, which is what a lot of the guiding philosophy of child rearing is about now, I think is a bit more problematic.

Also because the schools don't actually in and of themselves distinguish between different types of behavior anymore.  I mean, you have on the one hand these absurd zero-tolerance things which again arise in the vacuum so that your 6-year-old can be declared a sex offender even though he's got no real idea what sex is, an 11-year-old can be forced to be strip searched for bringing pills to school.  In a sense you introduce people to all the worst aspects of adulthood anyway.  They might as well go for the full Paris Hilton.

GLENN:  But I don't think these kids anymore are kids.  I don't think -- you tell me, Mark.  Are you -- when you were 16, were you these kids?

STEYN:  Well, when I was 16 I was in a -- I think I was in a hurry to be a grownup, but I don't think that meant in those days getting the sort of electric rush or the electric charge that these kids are looking for.  I think you're right that in the big offense we've actually abolished childhood.  We say to people now doctors are anxious to stop protecting kids from sexual diseases at the age of 8 or 9 and what have you and yet -- and so they live in this kind of artificial physical adolescence with no real intellectual growth for the next kind of 15 to 20 years.

GLENN:  Yeah.

STEYN:  And I think that's the idea that sort of licensing people's physical appetite without any kind of emotional or intellectual growth is the problem.

GLENN:  Do you have kids?

STEYN:  Yes, I do.  I've got three and I would be horrified if they were doing this kind of stuff and I'm horrified by, already by, you know, most of the stuff that is peddled as children's entertainment.

GLENN:  You know, it's funny.  How old are your kids?

STEYN:  They are 12, 10 and 7.

GLENN:  Okay.  So were they young enough to see Curious George, the movie Curious George?

STEYN:  Yes, they did.

GLENN:  When I saw that movie, I haven't seen a movie like that, that was just sweet and innocent and kind and was really truly a children's movie.  I hadn't seen that in I don't know how long and I mean, we've stopped with all of the -- I mean, so many of the children's movies that are out now, I mean, you look at Shrek.  The kids will love it, but that's not a message of sweetness and kindness and just innocence.  We've lost the innocence of childhood.

STEYN:  Yeah, and I think you can actually see it in movies like Shrek.  You know, Shrek is an amazingly accomplished work in some respects except the story I think is small at heart and you get these rather sort of crass and vulgar jokes along the way.  And there's always that aspect of childhood, you know children fascinated by flatulence or whatever.  But great children's literature didn't celebrate flatulence and there's some way in which we've kind of diminished the imagination of children.  I mention this, I prefer reading to my kids classic children's books rather than these grubby ones the school tries to inflict on them which is all, you know, so-and-so thought it was going to be a boring summer working at the community center but then his new Hispanic friend took him to meet somebody who was a drug addict mom, and it's all social problems.

GLENN:  Yeah.

STEYN:  There's nothing heroic in it.

GLENN:  I have to tell you I'm reading a new book.  It's coming out in, I don't know, a month or so.  New book.  It's written for 12-year-old boys.  I'm about halfway through.  And if it finishes the way it has started, it is the first book that I have read that is mainstream heroic boy adventures.  I don't think I've read anything like this since I was a kid.  I don't think I've seen anything like this since I was a kid.  And you're exactly right.  There's just, that's not what our culture puts out anymore.

STEYN:  No.  And I think actually that eventually connects to what -- because if you look at what is happening in schools, it's basically a racket now to suppress boydom, to suppress your boyishness and boy-like behavior.  And one consequence of that is that you get this disgusting so-called behavior from girls that you've been talking about.  But the whole idea of childhood is a way that boyishness and boyhood is a problem that has to be suppressed, psychologically controlled and medicated.  In 20 years time what kind of men do you have raising a society like that?

GLENN:  You know, we were just talking about that on who's worse, the boys or the girls and never really thought of it in the context of what we're talking about now.  In this book it's about a boy.  It starts out with him in his little sailboat with his dog and he's trying to get back into shore, et cetera, et cetera.  There's a point where he's protecting his little sister.  I mean, it is -- you see a boy on an adventure with his dog and protecting his little sister.  I mean, when's the last time you saw that story celebrated?

STEYN:  Yeah, exactly.  And that is the classic story.  I always thought -- I was asked this question at a speech the other day because I've been critical with reference to some of these school shootings we have and I referenced one up in Montreal where some crazy guy, Islamic fellas it happens, walked into the classroom, ordered the boys to leave and then shot all the girls and I'm saying that, you know, it is disgraceful that these boys left the classroom, these young men.  It was a college.  So they are like 19, 20, 21.  They went and stood in the corridor and then this guy walks past them.  And I said at some point just diminishing boyhood and diminishing the virtues of manliness and has a consequence for the kinds of society we raise.

GLENN:  Let me switch gears alone because I know America Alone comes out in paperback today, right?

STEYN:  That's right.

GLENN:  If you haven't read this book, I've been telling you for over a year you've got to read this book.  It will really give you a handle of what we're facing and what we're really facing over in Europe and I mean, it is all upside down over in Europe and it is going to put us in a situation where we are alone.  Did you add any new chapters to this?

STEYN:  Yeah, I added a new introduction because you've been very kind to the book, Glenn.  But people have said, oh, this is unnecessarily alarmist.  Since the book came out, we had obviously things like the archbishop of Canterbury saying that the introduction of Islamic law to the United Kingdom is inevitable; so we might as well just get on with it.  That would have been unthinkable if on September the 10th the idea that people in Western countries would be saying that.  We've discovered that in Toronto now polygamists can claim welfare checks for each of their wives.

GLENN:  You know, I have to tell you something, mark.  I thought of you just the other day when I saw the -- was it yesterday when they went in and stormed that fundamentalist Mormon compound?

STEYN:  Right.

GLENN:  And they took all these polygamists out and I thought, look at this.  We not only go try to arrest these people as we should, not only try to break this kind of sickness up as we should, we'll do that on one hand but while the rest of the western world is not only not coming out against polygamy of Muslims but they are helping endorse it.  They are paying for welfare, they're working in the divorce courts with it.  I mean, it's craziness.

STEYN:  Yes.  And it's the worst of both worlds, east is east and west is west and when they meet you get the worst of four worlds.  He has to do it on his own dime.  If he wants to get the government to subsidize his polygamy, he needs to move to France or Britain or Canada.

GLENN:  Mark, I'll talk to you again, my friend.  And how are things working out with the paperback coming out in Canada?  Are you going to be able to release it in Canada?

STEYN:  Well, it comes out supposedly next month and on June the 2nd, my show trial for hate crimes begins in British Columbia.  So it might only be a four week window of opportunity to buy the book north of the border.

GLENN:  Are you going up into Canada to stand trial?

STEYN:  Yeah.  I'm going to confront my accusers, I'm going to be reporting live from the witness box insofar as I can because I don't believe the book is a hate crime and if the government of Canada wants to make it a hate crime, then they are going to have to tell me to my face.

GLENN:  What's the worst thing they can do to you up in Canada?

STEYN:  Well, like they did with this pastor in Alberta who wrote a letter to his newspaper about gay marriage.  They have given him a lifetime ban on ever speaking or writing publicly about homosexuality anywhere in public again.  I mean, amazing things they pass up there.

GLENN:  That's absolutely incredible.

STEYN:  Yeah.

GLENN:  All right.  Well, Mark, we'll talk to you again and we'll talk to you as we get closer to the trial, you've got to let me know.  I'd love to be up there covering it with you.

STEYN:  Okay, that sounds great.  That's what they need up there, Glenn.  Thanks a lot.  Bye.

GLENN:  Name of the book is "America Alone," Mark Steyn.

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.