According to President Biden, Democrats and Republicans are no longer just disagreeing on policies, they’re locked in a “battle for the soul of the nation.”
So, let’s take a look at the key players.
Two Presidents in their own words.
Both are at a time in their presidency when political division is high and the “culture war” is ramping up.
Both spoke at significant locations in America — one outside of Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and one at the base of Mount Rushmore in Keystone, South Dakota.
Full transcripts for both speeches follow, with text highlighted.
Here is President Joe Biden giving a rare Presidential address about the “Ongoing Battle For the Soul of the Nation” on Thursday night.
Well, that’s very different from what he said when he was running for President.
— Leftism (@LeftismForU) September 2, 2022
Maybe that’s why there were some more “earthy” versions of “Let’s Go Brandon” being shouted at him during his speech.
Biden gets absolutely HUMILIATED by savage heckler yelling "F**CK JOE BIDEN" pic.twitter.com/VbW6M68YKE
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) September 2, 2022
ClashDaily covered Joe’s speech in more depth here:
Who thought that the dark background with the red lighting and uniformed Marines standing guard was a good look?
It looks like Stalin’s Russia and Hitler’s Third Reich had a baby that later hooked up with the lovechild of the IngSoc Party of Orwell’s “1984” and Norsefire of “V for Vendetta” — and it’s being led by a nursing home patient who shuffles when he walks and slurs when he speaks.
One may wonder if someone on Biden’s team believes that “Meme Magic” — the (joke) theory that internet memes can transcend from cyberspace and manifest in the real world — and they’re leaning into that whole “Dark Brandon” aesthetic on purpose…
…which is an interesting choice when you’re calling your opponents “semi-fascists”.
I guess when your leader looks like he needs help getting dressed in the morning, you’ve gotta up the ante on making him look powerful.
Here are three headlines just from the New York Times praising “Dear Leader”:
Contrast that with President Trump’s Independence Day Speech at Mt. Rushmore, July 3, 2020, when political violence in the form of BLM/Antifa/1619 riots were happening all over the country.
Oddly enough, the New York Times saw this speech in a very different light.
What could possibly account for that, do you think?
We see what the chattering laptop class thinks, but what do you think?
Which Presidential Address Was MORE 'Dark' & 'Divisive'?
Here is the full transcript of President Biden’s 24-minute speech. (Emphasis added)
THE PRESIDENT: My fellow Americans, please, if you have a seat, take it. I speak to you tonight from sacred ground in America: Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
This is where America made its Declaration of Independence to the world more than two centuries ago with an idea, unique among nations, that in America, we’re all created equal.
This is where the United States Constitution was written and debated.
This is where we set in motion the most extraordinary experiment of self-government the world has ever known with three simple words: “We, the People.” “We, the People.”
These two documents and the ideas they embody — equality and democracy — are the rock upon which this nation is built. They are how we became the greatest nation on Earth. They are why, for more than two centuries, America has been a beacon to the world.
But as I stand here tonight, equality and democracy are under assault. We do ourselves no favor to pretend otherwise.
So tonight, I have come this place where it all began to speak as plainly as I can to the nation about the threats we face, about the power we have in our own hands to meet these threats, and about the incredible future that lies in front of us if only we choose it.
We must never forget: We, the people, are the true heirs of the American experiment that began more than two centuries ago.
We, the people, have burning inside each of us the flame of liberty that was lit here at Independence Hall — a flame that lit our way through abolition, the Civil War, Suffrage, the Great Depression, world wars, Civil Rights.
That sacred flame still burns now in our time as we build an America that is more prosperous, free, and just.
That is the work of my presidency, a mission I believe in with my whole soul.
But first, we must be honest with each other and with ourselves.
Too much of what’s happening in our country today is not normal.
Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic.
Now, I want to be very clear — (applause) — very clear up front: Not every Republican, not even the majority of Republicans, are MAGA Republicans. Not every Republican embraces their extreme ideology.
I know because I’ve been able to work with these mainstream Republicans.
But there is no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven, and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans, and that is a threat to this country.
These are hard things.
But I’m an American President — not the President of red America or blue America, but of all America.
And I believe it is my duty — my duty to level with you, to tell the truth no matter how difficult, no matter how painful.
And here, in my view, is what is true: MAGA Republicans do not respect the Constitution. They do not believe in the rule of law. They do not recognize the will of the people.
They refuse to accept the results of a free election. And they’re working right now, as I speak, in state after state to give power to decide elections in America to partisans and cronies, empowering election deniers to undermine democracy itself.
MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards — backwards to an America where there is no right to choose, no right to privacy, no right to contraception, no right to marry who you love.
They promote authoritarian leaders, and they fan the flames of political violence that are a threat to our personal rights, to the pursuit of justice, to the rule of law, to the very soul of this country.
They look at the mob that stormed the United States Capitol on January 6th — brutally attacking law enforcement — not as insurrectionists who placed a dagger to the throat of our democracy, but they look at them as patriots.
And they see their MAGA failure to stop a peaceful transfer of power after the 2020 election as preparation for the 2022 and 2024 elections.
They tried everything last time to nullify the votes of 81 million people. This time, they’re determined to succeed in thwarting the will of the people.
That’s why respected conservatives, like Federal Circuit Court Judge Michael Luttig, has called Trump and the extreme MAGA Republicans, quote, a “clear and present danger” to our democracy.
But while the threat to American democracy is real, I want to say as clearly as we can: We are not powerless in the face of these threats. We are not bystanders in this ongoing attack on democracy.
There are far more Americans — far more Americans from every — from every background and belief who reject the extreme MAGA ideology than those that accept it. (Applause.)
And, folks, it is within our power, it’s in our hands — yours and mine — to stop the assault on American democracy.
I believe America is at an inflection point — one of those moments that determine the shape of everything that’s to come after.
And now America must choose: to move forward or to move backwards? To build the future or obsess about the past? To be a nation of hope and unity and optimism, or a nation of fear, division, and of darkness?
MAGA Republicans have made their choice. They embrace anger. They thrive on chaos. They live not in the light of truth but in the shadow of lies.
But together — together, we can choose a different path. We can choose a better path. Forward, to the future. A future of possibility. A future to build and dream and hope.
And we’re on that path, moving ahead.
I know this nation. I know you, the American people. I know your courage. I know your hearts. And I know our history.
This is a nation that honors our Constitution. We do not reject it. (Applause.)
This is a nation that believes in the rule of law. We do not repudiate it. (Applause.)
This is a nation that respects free and fair elections. We honor the will of the people. We do not deny it. (Applause.)
And this is a nation that rejects violence as a political tool. We do not encourage violence.
We are still an America that believes in honesty and decency and respect for others, patriotism, liberty, justice for all, hope, possibilities.
We are still, at our core, a democracy. (Applause.)
And yet history tells us that blind loyalty to a single leader and a willingness to engage in political violence is fatal to democracy.
For a long time, we’ve told ourselves that American democracy is guaranteed, but it’s not.
We have to defend it, protect it, stand up for it — each and every one of us.
That’s why tonight I’m asking our nation to come together, unite behind the single purpose of defending our democracy regardless of your ideology. (Applause.)
We’re all called, by duty and conscience, to confront extremists who will put their own pursuit of power above all else.
Democrats, independents, mainstream Republicans: We must be stronger, more determined, and more committed to saving American democracy than MAGA Republicans are to — to destroying American democracy.
We, the people, will not let anyone or anything tear us apart. Today, there are dangers around us we cannot allow to prevail. We hear — you’ve heard it — more and more talk about violence as an acceptable political tool in this country. It’s not. It can never be an acceptable tool.
So I want to say this plain and simple: There is no place for political violence in America. Period. None. Ever. (Applause.)
We saw law enforcement brutally attacked on January the 6th. We’ve seen election officials, poll workers — many of them volunteers of both parties — subjected to intimidation and death threats. And — can you believe it? — FBI agents just doing their job as directed, facing threats to their own lives from their own fellow citizens.
On top of that, there are public figures — today, yesterday, and the day before — predicting and all but calling for mass violence and rioting in the streets.
This is inflammatory. It’s dangerous. It’s against the rule of law. And we, the people, must say: This is not who we are. (Applause.)
Ladies and gentlemen, we can’t be pro-ex- — pro-ex- — pro-insurrectionist and pro-American. They’re incompatible. (Applause.)
We can’t allow violence to be normalized in this country. It’s wrong. We each have to reject political violence with — with all the moral clarity and conviction this nation can muster. Now.
We can’t let the integrity of our elections be undermined, for that is a path to chaos.
Look, I know poli- — politics can be fierce and mean and nasty in America. I get it. I believe in the give-and-take of politics, in disagreement and debate and dissent.
We’re a big, complicated country. But democracy endures only if we, the people, respect the guardrails of the republic. Only if we, the people, accept the results of free and fair elections. (Applause.) Only if we, the people, see politics not as total war but mediation of our differences.
Democracy cannot survive when one side believes there are only two outcomes to an election: either they win or they were cheated. And that’s where MAGA Republicans are today. (Applause.)
They don’t understand what every patriotic American knows: You can’t love your country only when you win. (Applause.) It’s fundamental.
American democracy only works only if we choose to respect the rule of law and the institutions that were set up in this chamber behind me, only if we respect our legitimate political differences.
I will not stand by and watch — I will not — the will of the American people be overturned by wild conspiracy theories and baseless, evidence-free claims of fraud.
I will not stand by and watch elections in this country stolen by people who simply refuse to accept that they lost. (Applause.)
I will not stand by and watch the most fundamental freedom in this country — the freedom to vote and have your vote counted — and — be taken from you and the American people. (Applause.)
Look, as your President, I will defend our democracy with every fiber of my being, and I’m asking every American to join me. (Applause.)
(A protestor disruption can be heard.)
Throughout our history, America has often made the greatest progress coming out of some of our darkest moments, like you’re hearing in that bullhorn.
I believe we can and we must do that again, and we are.
MAGA Republicans look at America and see carnage and darkness and despair. They spread fear and lies –- lies told for profit and power.
But I see a very different America — an America with an unlimited future, an America that is about to take off. I hope you see it as well. Just look around.
I believed we could lift America from the depths of COVID, so we passed the largest economic recovery package since Franklin Delano Roosevelt. And today, America’s economy is faster, stronger than any other advanced nation in the world. (Applause.) We have more to go.
I believed we could build a better America, so we passed the biggest infrastructure investment since President Dwight D. Eisenhower. And we’ve now embarked on a decade of rebuilding the nation’s roads, bridges, highways, ports, water systems, high-speed Internet, railroads. (Applause.)
I believed we could make America safer, so we passed the most significant gun safety law since President Clinton. (Applause.)
I believed we could go from being the highest cost of prescriptions in the world to making prescription drugs and healthcare more affordable, so we passed the most significant healthcare reforms since President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act. (Applause.)
And I believed we could create — we could create a clean energy future and save the planet, so we passed the most important climate initiative ever, ever, ever. (Applause.)
The cynics and the critics tell us nothing can get done, but they are wrong. There is not a single thing America cannot do — not a single thing beyond our capacity if we do it together.
It’s never easy. But we’re proving that in America, no matter how long the road, progress does come. (Applause.)
Look, I know the last year — few years have been tough. But today, COVID no longer controls our lives. More Americans are working than ever. Businesses are growing. Our schools are open. Millions of Americans have been lifted out of poverty. Millions of veterans once exposed to toxic burn pits will now get what they deserve for their families and the compa- — compensation. (Applause.)
American manufacturing has come alive across the Heartland, and the future will be made in America — (applause) — no matter what the white supremacists and the extremists say.
I made a bet on you, the American people, and that bet is paying off. Proving that from darkness — the darkness of Charlottesville, of COVID, of gun violence, of insurrection — we can see the light. Light is now visible. (Applause.)
Light that will guide us forward not only in words, but in actions — actions for you, for your children, for your grandchildren, for America.
Even in this moment, with all the challenges we face, I give you my word as a Biden: I’ve never been more optimistic about America’s future. Not because of me, but because of who you are.
We’re going to end cancer as we know it. Mark my words. (Applause.)
We are going to create millions of new jobs in a clean energy economy.
We’re going to think big. We’re going to make the 21st century another American century because the world needs us to. (Applause.)
That’s where we need to focus our energy — not in the past, not on divisive culture wars, not on the politics of grievance, but on a future we can build together.
The MAGA Republicans believe that for them to succeed, everyone else has to fail. They believe America — not like I believe about America.
I believe America is big enough for all of us to succeed, and that is the nation we’re building: a nation where no one is left behind.
I ran for President because I believed we were in a battle for the soul of this nation. I still believe that to be true. I believe the soul is the breath, the life, and the essence of who we are. The soul is what makes us “us.”
The soul of America is defined by the sacred proposition that all are created equal in the image of God. That all are entitled to be treated with decency, dignity, and respect. That all deserve justice and a shot at lives of prosperity and consequence. And that democracy — democracy must be defended, for democracy makes all these things possible. (Applause.) Folks, and it’s up to us.
Democracy begins and will be preserved in we, the people’s, habits of heart, in our character: optimism that is tested yet endures, courage that digs deep when we need it, empathy that fuels democracy, the willingness to see each other not as enemies but as fellow Americans.
Look, our democracy is imperfect. It always has been.
Notwithstanding those folks you hear on the other side there. They’re entitled to be outrageous. This is a democracy. But history and common sense — (applause) — good manners is nothing they’ve ever suffered from.
But history and common sense tell us that opportunity, liberty, and justice for all are most likely to come to pass in a democracy.
We have never fully realized the aspirations of our founding, but every generation has opened those doors a little wider to include more people who have been excluded before.
My fellow Americans, America is an idea — the most powerful idea in the history of the world. And it beats in the hearts of the people of this country. It beats in all of our hearts. It unites America. It is the American creed.
The idea that America guarantees that everyone be treated with dignity. It gives hate no safe harbor. It installs in everyone the belief that no matter where you start in life, there’s nothing you can’t achieve.
That’s who we are. That’s what we stand for. That’s what we believe. And that is precisely what we are doing: opening doors, creating new possibilities, focusing on the future. And we’re only just beginning. (Applause.)
Our task is to make our nation free and fair, just and strong, noble and whole.
And this work is the work of democracy — the work of this generation. It is the work of our time, for all time.
We can’t afford to have — leave anyone on the sidelines. We need everyone to do their part. So speak up. Speak out. Get engaged. Vote, vote, vote. (Applause.)
And if we all do our duty — if we do our duty in 2022 and beyond, then ages still to come will say we — all of us here — we kept the faith. We preserved democracy. (Applause.) We heeded our wor- — we — we heeded not our worst instincts but our better angels. And we proved that, for all its imperfections, America is still the beacon to the world, an ideal to be realized, a promise to be kept.
There is nothing more important, nothing more sacred, nothing more American. That’s our soul. That’s who we truly are. And that’s who must — we must always be.
And I have no doubt — none –– that this is who we will be and that we’ll come together as a nation. That we’ll secure our democracy. That for the next 200 years, we’ll have what we had the past 200 years: the greatest nation on the face of the Earth.
We just need to remember who we are. We are the United States of America. The United States of America. (Applause.)
And may God protect our nation. And may God protect all those who stand watch over our democracy. God bless you all. (Applause.) Democracy. Thank you. (Applause.)
Now, here is the full transcript of former President Trump’s 43-minute speech in front of Mount Rushmore. (Emphasis added)
THE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you very much. And Governor Noem, Secretary Bernhardt — very much appreciate it — members of Congress, distinguished guests, and a very special hello to South Dakota. (Applause.)
As we begin this Fourth of July weekend, the First Lady and I wish each and every one of you a very, very Happy Independence Day. Thank you. (Applause.)
Let us show our appreciation to the South Dakota Army and Air National Guard, and the U.S. Air Force for inspiring us with that magnificent display of American air power — (applause) –and of course, our gratitude, as always, to the legendary and very talented Blue Angels. Thank you very much. (Applause.)
Let us also send our deepest thanks to our wonderful veterans, law enforcement, first responders, and the doctors, nurses, and scientists working tirelessly to kill the virus. They’re working hard. (Applause.) I want to thank them very, very much.
We’re grateful as well to your state’s Congressional delegation: Senators John Thune — John, thank you very much — (applause) — Senator Mike Rounds — (applause) — thank you, Mike — and Dusty Johnson, Congressman. Hi, Dusty. Thank you. (Applause.) And all others with us tonight from Congress, thank you very much for coming. We appreciate it.
There could be no better place to celebrate America’s independence than beneath this magnificent, incredible, majestic mountain and monument to the greatest Americans who have ever lived.
Today, we pay tribute to the exceptional lives and extraordinary legacies of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt. (Applause.) I am here as your President to proclaim before the country and before the world: This monument will never be desecrated — (applause) — these heroes will never be defaced, their legacy will never, ever be destroyed, their achievements will never be forgotten, and Mount Rushmore will stand forever as an eternal tribute to our forefathers and to our freedom. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
THE PRESIDENT: We gather tonight to herald the most important day in the history of nations: July 4th, 1776. At those words, every American heart should swell with pride. Every American family should cheer with delight. And every American patriot should be filled with joy, because each of you lives in the most magnificent country in the history of the world, and it will soon be greater than ever before. (Applause.)
Our Founders launched not only a revolution in government, but a revolution in the pursuit of justice, equality, liberty, and prosperity. No nation has done more to advance the human condition than the United States of America. And no people have done more to promote human progress than the citizens of our great nation. (Applause.)
It was all made possible by the courage of 56 patriots who gathered in Philadelphia 244 years ago and signed the Declaration of Independence. (Applause.) They enshrined a divine truth that changed the world forever when they said: “…all men are created equal.”
These immortal words set in motion the unstoppable march of freedom. Our Founders boldly declared that we are all endowed with the same divine rights — given [to] us by our Creator in Heaven. And that which God has given us, we will allow no one, ever, to take away — ever. (Applause.)
Seventeen seventy-six represented the culmination of thousands of years of western civilization and the triumph not only of spirit, but of wisdom, philosophy, and reason.
And yet, as we meet here tonight, there is a growing danger that threatens every blessing our ancestors fought so hard for, struggled, they bled to secure.
Our nation is witnessing a merciless campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values, and indoctrinate our children.
AUDIENCE: Booo —
THE PRESIDENT: Angry mobs are trying to tear down statues of our Founders, deface our most sacred memorials, and unleash a wave of violent crime in our cities. Many of these people have no idea why they are doing this, but some know exactly what they are doing. They think the American people are weak and soft and submissive. But no, the American people are strong and proud, and they will not allow our country, and all of its values, history, and culture, to be taken from them. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
THE PRESIDENT: One of their political weapons is “Cancel Culture” — driving people from their jobs, shaming dissenters, and demanding total submission from anyone who disagrees. This is the very definition of totalitarianism, and it is completely alien to our culture and our values, and it has absolutely no place in the United States of America. (Applause.) This attack on our liberty, our magnificent liberty, must be stopped, and it will be stopped very quickly. We will expose this dangerous movement, protect our nation’s children, end this radical assault, and preserve our beloved American way of life. (Applause.)
In our schools, our newsrooms, even our corporate boardrooms, there is a new far-left fascism that demands absolute allegiance. If you do not speak its language, perform its rituals, recite its mantras, and follow its commandments, then you will be censored, banished, blacklisted, persecuted, and punished. It’s not going to happen to us. (Applause.)
Make no mistake: this left-wing cultural revolution is designed to overthrow the American Revolution. In so doing, they would destroy the very civilization that rescued billions from poverty, disease, violence, and hunger, and that lifted humanity to new heights of achievement, discovery, and progress.
To make this possible, they are determined to tear down every statue, symbol, and memory of our national heritage.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Not on my watch! (Applause.)
THE PRESIDENT: True. That’s very true, actually. (Laughter.) That is why I am deploying federal law enforcement to protect our monuments, arrest the rioters, and prosecute offenders to the fullest extent of the law. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: Four more years! Four more years! Four more years!
THE PRESIDENT: I am pleased to report that yesterday, federal agents arrested the suspected ringleader of the attack on the statue of Andrew Jackson in Washington, D.C. — (applause) — and, in addition, hundreds more have been arrested. (Applause.)
Under the executive order I signed last week — pertaining to the Veterans’ Memorial Preservation and Recognition Act and other laws — people who damage or deface federal statues or monuments will get a minimum of 10 years in prison. (Applause.) And obviously, that includes our beautiful Mount Rushmore. (Applause.)
Our people have a great memory. They will never forget the destruction of statues and monuments to George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, abolitionists, and many others.
The violent mayhem we have seen in the streets of cities that are run by liberal Democrats, in every case, is the predictable result of years of extreme indoctrination and bias in education, journalism, and other cultural institutions.
Against every law of society and nature, our children are taught in school to hate their own country, and to believe that the men and women who built it were not heroes, but that were villains. The radical view of American history is a web of lies — all perspective is removed, every virtue is obscured, every motive is twisted, every fact is distorted, and every flaw is magnified until the history is purged and the record is disfigured beyond all recognition.
This movement is openly attacking the legacies of every person on Mount Rushmore. They defile the memory of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Roosevelt. Today, we will set history and history’s record straight. (Applause.)
Before these figures were immortalized in stone, they were American giants in full flesh and blood, gallant men whose intrepid deeds unleashed the greatest leap of human advancement the world has ever known. Tonight, I will tell you and, most importantly, the youth of our nation, the true stories of these great, great men.
From head to toe, George Washington represented the strength, grace, and dignity of the American people. From a small volunteer force of citizen farmers, he created the Continental Army out of nothing and rallied them to stand against the most powerful military on Earth.
Through eight long years, through the brutal winter at Valley Forge, through setback after setback on the field of battle, he led those patriots to ultimate triumph. When the Army had dwindled to a few thousand men at Christmas of 1776, when defeat seemed absolutely certain, he took what remained of his forces on a daring nighttime crossing of the Delaware River.
They marched through nine miles of frigid darkness, many without boots on their feet, leaving a trail of blood in the snow. In the morning, they seized victory at Trenton. After forcing the surrender of the most powerful empire on the planet at Yorktown, General Washington did not claim power, but simply returned to Mount Vernon as a private citizen.
When called upon again, he presided over the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, and was unanimously elected our first President. (Applause.) When he stepped down after two terms, his former adversary King George called him “the greatest man of the age.” He remains first in our hearts to this day. For as long as Americans love this land, we will honor and cherish the father of our country, George Washington. (Applause.) He will never be removed, abolished, and most of all, he will never be forgotten. (Applause.)
Thomas Jefferson — the great Thomas Jefferson — was 33 years old when he traveled north to Pennsylvania and brilliantly authored one of the greatest treasures of human history, the Declaration of Independence. He also drafted Virginia’s constitution, and conceived and wrote the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, a model for our cherished First Amendment.
After serving as the first Secretary of State, and then Vice President, he was elected to the Presidency. He ordered American warriors to crush the Barbary pirates, he doubled the size of our nation with the Louisiana Purchase, and he sent the famous explorers Lewis and Clark into the west on a daring expedition to the Pacific Ocean.
He was an architect, an inventor, a diplomat, a scholar, the founder of one of the world’s great universities, and an ardent defender of liberty. Americans will forever admire the author of American freedom, Thomas Jefferson. (Applause.) And he, too, will never, ever be abandoned by us. (Applause.)
Abraham Lincoln, the savior of our union, was a self-taught country lawyer who grew up in a log cabin on the American frontier.
The first Republican President, he rose to high office from obscurity, based on a force and clarity of his anti-slavery convictions. Very, very strong convictions.
He signed the law that built the Transcontinental Railroad; he signed the Homestead Act, given to some incredible scholars — as simply defined, ordinary citizens free land to settle anywhere in the American West; and he led the country through the darkest hours of American history, giving every ounce of strength that he had to ensure that government of the people, by the people, and for the people did not perish from this Earth. (Applause.)
He served as Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces during our bloodiest war, the struggle that saved our union and extinguished the evil of slavery. Over 600,000 died in that war; more than 20,000 were killed or wounded in a single day at Antietam. At Gettysburg, 157 years ago, the Union bravely withstood an assault of nearly 15,000 men and threw back Pickett’s charge.
Lincoln won the Civil War; he issued the Emancipation Proclamation; he led the passage of the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery for all time — (applause) — and ultimately, his determination to preserve our nation and our union cost him his life. For as long as we live, Americans will uphold and revere the immortal memory of President Abraham Lincoln. (Applause.)
Theodore Roosevelt exemplified the unbridled confidence of our national culture and identity. He saw the towering grandeur of America’s mission in the world and he pursued it with overwhelming energy and zeal.
As a Lieutenant Colonel during the Spanish-American War, he led the famous Rough Riders to defeat the enemy at San Juan Hill. He cleaned up corruption as Police Commissioner of New York City, then served as the Governor of New York, Vice President, and at 42 years old, became the youngest-ever President of the United States. (Applause.)
He sent our great new naval fleet around the globe to announce America’s arrival as a world power. He gave us many of our national parks, including the Grand Canyon; he oversaw the construction of the awe-inspiring Panama Canal; and he is the only person ever awarded both the Nobel Peace Prize and the Congressional Medal of Honor. He was — (applause) — American freedom personified in full. The American people will never relinquish the bold, beautiful, and untamed spirit of Theodore Roosevelt. (Applause.)
No movement that seeks to dismantle these treasured American legacies can possibly have a love of America at its heart. Can’t have it. No person who remains quiet at the destruction of this resplendent heritage can possibly lead us to a better future.
The radical ideology attacking our country advances under the banner of social justice. But in truth, it would demolish both justice and society. It would transform justice into an instrument of division and vengeance, and it would turn our free and inclusive society into a place of repression, domination, and exclusion.
They want to silence us, but we will not be silenced. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
AUDIENCE MEMBER: We love you!
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you very much.
We will state the truth in full, without apology: We declare that the United States of America is the most just and exceptional nation ever to exist on Earth.
We are proud of the fact — (applause) — that our country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles, and we understand — (applause) — that these values have dramatically advanced the cause of peace and justice throughout the world.
We know that the American family is the bedrock of American life. (Applause.)
We recognize the solemn right and moral duty of every nation to secure its borders. (Applause.) And we are building the wall. (Applause.)
We remember that governments exist to protect the safety and happiness of their own people. A nation must care for its own citizens first. We must take care of America first. It’s time. (Applause.)
We believe in equal opportunity, equal justice, and equal treatment for citizens of every race, background, religion, and creed. Every child, of every color — born and unborn — is made in the holy image of God. (Applause.)
We want free and open debate, not speech codes and cancel culture.
We embrace tolerance, not prejudice.
We support the courageous men and women of law enforcement. (Applause.) We will never abolish our police or our great Second Amendment, which gives us the right to keep and bear arms. (Applause.)
We believe that our children should be taught to love their country, honor our history, and respect our great American flag. (Applause.)
We stand tall, we stand proud, and we only kneel to Almighty God. (Applause.)
This is who we are. This is what we believe. And these are the values that will guide us as we strive to build an even better and greater future.
Those who seek to erase our heritage want Americans to forget our pride and our great dignity, so that we can no longer understand ourselves or America’s destiny. In toppling the heroes of 1776, they seek to dissolve the bonds of love and loyalty that we feel for our country, and that we feel for each other. Their goal is not a better America, their goal is the end of America.
AUDIENCE: Booo —
THE PRESIDENT: In its place, they want power for themselves. But just as patriots did in centuries past, the American people will stand in their way — and we will win, and win quickly and with great dignity. (Applause.)
We will never let them rip America’s heroes from our monuments, or from our hearts. By tearing down Washington and Jefferson, these radicals would tear down the very heritage for which men gave their lives to win the Civil War; they would erase the memory that inspired those soldiers to go to their deaths, singing these words of the Battle Hymn of the Republic: “As He died to make men Holy, let us die to make men free, while God is marching on.” (Applause.)
They would tear down the principles that propelled the abolition of slavery in America and, ultimately, around the world, ending an evil institution that had plagued humanity for thousands and thousands of years. Our opponents would tear apart the very documents that Martin Luther King used to express his dream, and the ideas that were the foundation of the righteous movement for Civil Rights. They would tear down the beliefs, culture, and identity that have made America the most vibrant and tolerant society in the history of the Earth.
My fellow Americans, it is time to speak up loudly and strongly and powerfully and defend the integrity of our country. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
THE PRESIDENT: It is time for our politicians to summon the bravery and determination of our American ancestors. It is time. (Applause.) It is time to plant our flag and protect the greatest of this nation, for citizens of every race, in every city, and every part of this glorious land. For the sake of our honor, for the sake of our children, for the sake of our union, we must protect and preserve our history, our heritage, and our great heroes. (Applause.)
Here tonight, before the eyes of our forefathers, Americans declare again, as we did 244 years ago: that we will not be tyrannized, we will not be demeaned, and we will not be intimidated by bad, evil people. It will not happen. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
THE PRESIDENT: We will proclaim the ideals of the Declaration of Independence, and we will never surrender the spirit and the courage and the cause of July 4th, 1776.
Upon this ground, we will stand firm and unwavering. In the face of lies meant to divide us, demoralize us, and diminish us, we will show that the story of America unites us, inspires us, includes us all, and makes everyone free.
We must demand that our children are taught once again to see America as did Reverend Martin Luther King, when he said that the Founders had signed “a promissory note” to every future generation. Dr. King saw that the mission of justice required us to fully embrace our founding ideals. Those ideals are so important to us — the founding ideals. He called on his fellow citizens not to rip down their heritage, but to live up to their heritage. (Applause.)
Above all, our children, from every community, must be taught that to be American is to inherit the spirit of the most adventurous and confident people ever to walk the face of the Earth.
Americans are the people who pursued our Manifest Destiny across the ocean, into the uncharted wilderness, over the tallest mountains, and then into the skies and even into the stars.
We are the country of Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant, and Frederick Douglass. We are the land of Wild Bill Hickock and Buffalo Bill Cody. (Applause.) We are the nation that gave rise to the Wright Brothers, the Tuskegee Airmen — (applause) — Harriet Tubman, Clara Barton, Jesse Owens, George Patton — General George Patton — the great Louie Armstrong, Alan Shepard, Elvis Presley, and Mohammad Ali. (Applause.) And only America could have produced them all. (Applause.) No other place.
We are the culture that put up the Hoover Dam, laid down the highways, and sculpted the skyline of Manhattan. We are the people who dreamed a spectacular dream — it was called: Las Vegas, in the Nevada desert; who built up Miami from the Florida marsh; and who carved our heroes into the face of Mount Rushmore. (Applause.)
Americans harnessed electricity, split the atom, and gave the world the telephone and the Internet. We settled the Wild West, won two World Wars, landed American astronauts on the Moon — and one day very soon, we will plant our flag on Mars.
We gave the world the poetry of Walt Whitman, the stories of Mark Twain, the songs of Irving Berlin, the voice of Ella Fitzgerald, the style of Frank Sinatra — (applause) — the comedy of Bob Hope, the power of the Saturn V rocket, the toughness of the Ford F-150 — (applause) — and the awesome might of the American aircraft carriers.
Americans must never lose sight of this miraculous story. You should never lose sight of it, because nobody has ever done it like we have done it. So today, under the authority vested in me as President of the United States — (applause) — I am announcing the creation of a new monument to the giants of our past. I am signing an executive order to establish the National Garden of American Heroes, a vast outdoor park that will feature the statues of the greatest Americans to ever live. (Applause.)
From this night and from this magnificent place, let us go forward united in our purpose and re-dedicated in our resolve. We will raise the next generation of American patriots. We will write the next thrilling chapter of the American adventure. And we will teach our children to know that they live in a land of legends, that nothing can stop them, and that no one can hold them down. (Applause.) They will know that in America, you can do anything, you can be anything, and together, we can achieve anything. (Applause.)
Uplifted by the titans of Mount Rushmore, we will find unity that no one expected; we will make strides that no one thought possible. This country will be everything that our citizens have hoped for, for so many years, and that our enemies fear — because we will never forget that American freedom exists for American greatness. And that’s what we have: American greatness. (Applause.)
Centuries from now, our legacy will be the cities we built, the champions we forged, the good we did, and the monuments we created to inspire us all.
My fellow citizens: America’s destiny is in our sights. America’s heroes are embedded in our hearts. America’s future is in our hands. And ladies and gentlemen: the best is yet to come. (Applause.)
AUDIENCE: USA! USA! USA!
THE PRESIDENT: This has been a great honor for the First Lady and myself to be with you. I love your state. I love this country. I’d like to wish everybody a very happy Fourth of July. To all, God bless you, God bless your families, God bless our great military, and God bless America. Thank you very much. (Applause.)