Glenn Beck: Heading for prison?




Border Patrol Fundraiser Shirt


All of Glenn's proceeds from the sale of this shirt will be donated to a legal defense fund for Agents Ramos and Compean.

GLENN: Oh, yeah. Stop the music for a second. Tara Setmayer. I don't -- Tara, for the love of Pete, I just find out that I've been saying your name wrong for how long? Over a year.

SETMAYER: No, it's quite already. It's --

GLENN: No, it's not. I feel horrible.

SETMAYER: Oh, you shouldn't. People make that mistake all the time but I'm not that easily offended. But I would be more offended if you called me Tara.

GLENN: Tara Setmayer. I'm going to have to retrain myself. How did this happen?

SETMAYER: Listen, you say it however you feel comfortable, Glenn. Listen, the German version is Set-Meyer, the American version is Set-Mayer. That's quite all right.

GLENN: Here's the thing. You went out -- well, tell us what you've been up to lately.

SETMAYER: Well, I just recently returned from my fourth visit to Ignacio Ramos in prison, the border agent, one of the border agents who was wrongly imprisoned and, you know, it's been really, really difficult for all of us. The waiting game since the December 3rd appeal was heard. No one ever expected the decision to take this long. But we have to wait patiently and --

GLENN: Hang on just a second.

SETMAYER: Sure.

GLENN: You think that's actually good news?

SETMAYER: I do. And the reason I do is because if the appellate judges were just going to uphold the decision, they would have done that by now. That's an easy thing to do. They could have turned it over and said, no, we're not going to overturn anything here. If they were simply going to get rid of the ten-year gun charge, they could have done that already. But I think that they are really taking a good, long, hard look at all of the legal questions, and there were many, from the immunity agreement to the inability to question the drug smuggler on the second drug load to jury instructions. There were a lot of very technical legal issues that needed to be reviewed and it looks as though they are taking the time necessary to do that.

GLENN: Okay. So you went out to the -- you went out to the prison and he has been in solitary confinement now 439, 443 days, I think?

SETMAYER: Roughly, yes.

GLENN: Okay. And he has been -- he has been there and there are two things that you said off the air that I want to talk to you about.

SETMAYER: Okay.

GLENN: Are you willing to talk about them?

SETMAYER: Sure.

GLENN: Okay. First one is that me and people like me are responsible for him being in solitary confinement?

SETMAYER: Yes. Since last year after Mr. Ramos was assaulted in prison, I actually sat in front of the director of the Bureau of Prisons, Harley Lapin, Walter Jones, Congressman Jones and Congressman Ted Poe. We had a meeting with Harley Lapin and we said, listen, what do we need to do to get these guys into a minimum security camp because obviously medium or low security they could not reasonably exist without being attacked. And they told us the reason why they would not move them into a minimum security camp was for two reasons. One, the gun charge, the ten-year mandatory minimum, disqualified them from going into a camp because it was considered a violent crime.

GLENN: Sure.

SETMAYER: And the length of term wouldn't allow them to do. The second thing was I said to the director, wait a minute, you have waiver authority. You can move them into any status you choose. And he said, well, the problem is that the media attention brought upon these two men has really put them at risk because every time their names and faces are in the media, that makes them more known. We cannot assimilate them. So we want to do it quietly but as long as you keep doing this, we can't move them.

GLENN: So in other words, if you just help us, we'll help you.

SETMAYER: Right.

GLENN: We're really there -- I mean, if you'll just stop bringing it up so they can spend a quiet ten years in prison instead of trying to overturn this, we can help. But --

SETMAYER: That's right. And that was a year ago and we obviously didn't accept that. And fast-forward to last week when Mr. Lapin visited Mr. Ramos, which was only because our office in conjunction with Congressman Hunter's office reinquired about that and he had no plans on visiting Ramos during his trip to the Phoenix facility until he made an inquiry about it.

GLENN: For anybody who doesn't know, Lapin is the director of the Bureau of Prisons.

SETMAYER: That's correct.

GLENN: And so he didn't want to come, but he did eventually come and it's my understanding that it wasn't real warm, wasn't cordial. It was kind of like, I'm here, what do you want, what's going on.

SETMAYER: That's right. And as a matter of fact, when I was talking to Ignacio on Tuesday he said they put him in this room and he said it's called the fish bowl and he felt like he was on display like an animal in the zoo, you know. He was very uncomfortable and they kept him handcuffed. When the director came in, as he was coming in, he could overhear him say to one of the guards, "Where's this guy I'm supposed to meet with." You know, you've got to be kidding me. This is how serious these guys take this? You know, it's very easy to legislate this from your ivory tower in Washington, D.C. but I wanted to make sure that Harley Lapin who is in the same room, sat across from Ignacio Ramos to look into the eyes of an innocent man that he has confined to solitary confinement for a year and he had no choice but to do that.

GLENN: And it's my understanding, I got word yesterday from somebody else that Ignacio listens to the program every day.

SETMAYER: Yes, he does. As a matter of fact, now he has radio in his cell. So he's able to listen to talk radio and have some interaction with the outside world because he doesn't have any other time. He'll hear this today.

GLENN: Okay, good. So he's listening, listening on KTAR, our affiliate there. Ignacio, let me tell you something, my friend. Nobody is going to forget you. We're never going to let people forget you. And here's the next step I would like to take. Tara, I'm working on a special that, it was easier to get the special on Islamic extremism done than for some reason this is. And I know I made a promise to my audience that I'm going to do a border special. Well, you wouldn't believe. It's just constantly, hmmm, we're getting to -- yes, we're getting right to it and just can't seem to move that machinery. But it is going to be done and what I'd like to do and I've been talking to people about this and again it just seems like it's darn near impossible to get done. And you told me last night it is. I would like to do an in-prison interview with Mr. Ramos and you said -- you told me last night -- I said, hey, can you help me out on that? You said it will never happen. Why?

SETMAYER: Well, it just shows you how highly politicized this issue is. I mean, this is coming straight from the White House and people don't -- I tell people this all the time, that every week that goes by and every ounce of my being that has been poured into this, I realize how I say this is not a game. This is coming directly from the White House and the powers that be are very entrenched in this. The politicization of the border is just unbelievable.

GLENN: Let me tell you something, Tara. You know and I know that when we get McCain or Obama or Clinton, it's only going to get worse.

SETMAYER: You're right.

GLENN: Anybody that thinks George Bush is bad, and I do, anyone who thinks he's bad on the border, it is only going to get much, much worse.

SETMAYER: I wish I could paint a rosier picture for you but you are 100% correct.

GLENN: Okay. So can you help me and would you help me brainstorm because I have to tell you, if there are obstacles in my way -- I mean, I see Dateline meeting with murderers, people who are on death row. I see people who are far, far worse sitting in front of 60 Minutes and their cameras in the prison. I certainly would like to know who's responsible for stopping us. We'll do all it -- if you'll just walk us through, help us do all of the right things to make sure we do it all right but then I'm going to create a paper trail to show exactly who's stopping us from doing it because it is an absolute outrage if somebody for political reasons is stopping us from interviewing somebody in prison where they give this to murderers and child molesters, they will allow that to happen.

SETMAYER: I can tell you that they will use the excuse because there is an ongoing investigation and the case is still under appeal. You know, my boss just really quickly, he's on a -- an investigation with Oklahoma City with any foreign connection and he's been trying to get an interview with Ramsey Yousef who was World Trade Center one mastermind. We found some very interesting circumstantial evidence that may have connected him with Terry Nichols and my boss would like to just go and interview him. The Justice Department has said no, you do not as a member of congress have a right to interview a federal prisoner because there's an ongoing investigation. He's been in jail for ten years. So I'm just warning you ahead of time what you're up against, but I will do everything in my power to assist you guys with that and I think they're probably going to -- they're waiting for the decision from the fifth circuit.

GLENN: Sure. I understand that, and we'll wait for the decision and maybe everything will go away but if it doesn't go away, I'm not going to go away.

SETMAYER: Nor should you.

GLENN: No, not going to. Thank you very much, Tara. And Ignacio, love you, man. There's a lot of people who know that you are in that little box. Nobody has forgotten you. Thanks a lot, Tara.

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.