Ladies and gentlemen of America, we are on the brink. We will either succumb to the blows of tyranny or we will rise to the occasion to defeat it. This isn’t just a war for the sake of liberty; it’s a war in defense of our heritage, and our fathers who shed their blood, sweat, and tears for us; not only in war, but in making an honest living. They labored in the mills, the mines, the factories and the fields; they farmed the land and built the skyscrapers; they took their stand at Concord and Lexington; they suffered through Valley Forge “without clothes to cover their nakedness, without blankets to lay on, without shoes by which their marches might be traced by the blood from their feet”. They pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor; and they dared to declare some truths as 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.”
They fought to the death at the Alamo; they stormed the beaches of Normandy, Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. They held their dying friends in their arms, stared death in the face and dared to rush straight into it. And yet today our adversaries are foolish enough to turn around and spit on their graves. As a people, we are nothing without our ancestors; without our heritage and our culture.
Our adversaries are prepared to desecrate every grave, to topple every monument, and to rewrite every history. They relish this fight, because, as they see it, their enemies are too far gone to put up a fight: either long deceased or too distant in the past to be worth defending. Now, it’s up to you to prove them wrong. It’s up to you to prove that this is still a country of principle and liberty; a country that puts a proper value on the rights we’ve inherited and the stake that’s been defended throughout our history. When you hear someone speak of “white supremacy” in our country, point to the hundreds of thousands of white stones across Arlington. Point to the men and women who’ve worked the land, who’ve suffered through the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, who know firsthand the Grapes of Wrath.
Point to the countless decent and hardworking families that aren’t in the history books. Have them remember that the cause of America is the cause of mankind, and that it is because of the men buried under those stones that we stand to enjoy those rights as declared by men but endowed by God. As the men before us stared into the abyss, let us stare back into their eyes and remember their cause, their humanity, and their stories.
Let us remember that blood once coursed through their veins and love through their hearts, and that they are more than a statistic, more than letters on a page, and no less human than we are today. Let us remember their courage, their perseverance, and their sacrifice, and let us discourage any who might dare to make a mockery of any part of it. Let us remember what it means to be an American, and let us send a forceful reminder to those who’ve forgotten.