Thank you for listening to this podcast, one production now available on Apple podcast, podcast, one Spotify and anywhere else you get your podcasts. Charlie, what you've done is incredible here. Maybe Charlie Cook is on the college campus. I want you to know we are lucky to have Charlie Cook, Charlie Cook running in the White House.
I want to thank Charlie. He's an incredible guy, his spirit, his love of this country. He's done an amazing job building one of the most powerful youth organizations ever created. Turning Point USA. We will not embrace the ideas that have destroyed countries, destroyed lives, and we are going to fight for freedom on campuses across the country. That's why we are here.
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Well, I want to start something about a lot of these people know you. Some of them don't. So I want to start at the beginning. Tell us about growing up, you know, your family, your faith. How did you become who you are now? Well, honored to be here. First of all, I want to say before we get started, Kelly, what you're doing is one of the most important efforts in the entire country.
I've been more made aware of what you're doing in the last 24 hours than I was previously. And something the left has really perfected is what I call law fare warfare in the law arena, which is overly using the courts to basically get there backwards and malevolent worldview by fiat. And what you're doing to fight for first principles is incredible and so important. So everyone who's supporting Kelly and for Liberty, it's incredible. Really is.
I am born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, or the suburbs of Chicago, went to public high school, really high school. I had a pretty traditional upbringing. My father an architect, my my mother, a mental health counselor. I always wanted to go to West Point and my whole life designed around going to West Point, I guess you could say an Eagle Scout football basketball captain did good in school and God had other plans. For me, it actually was the best thing that never happened to me.
Ended up not getting in to the United States Military Academy at West Point. And I just took a pause and my parents said, you're on your own for college. You got to pay your own way through. We're not going to help you at all. And that was a great, great thing. They told me because I had to try to I grew up in a hurry and so I would that I was then had to go to the decision.
Is it worth me going seventy to eighty thousand dollars in debt like this for college? I really wasn't that passionate about. And so I told my parents like, hey, I'm going to take a gap year. And they said, what are you going to do? I said, I don't know. I'm gonna try to save the country. They laugh, so go, go, go do that. Sure. And prior to that, I grew up as a Christian, most important thing in my life, saved early in my life from when I was 12 or 13 years old.
But that means more. As you get older, there's a salvation and there's a discipleship. As you get older, really start start to grow in your faith. Raise Presbyterian until they decided to basically become not not the I was the Peace USA. I grew up in a liberal one. As soon as they decided to be kind of like a spokesperson for the Democrat National Party, our family life and not kidding. It's if you know, if you know that tradition of Presbyterianism, as soon as as soon as they were spending more time commenting on Rachel Maddow is opening segment and not on the gospel, I was like, there's something wrong here, right?
Is the church should not be hardball with Hardball, with Chris Matthews, that organ music. So, so, so anyway, really, faith is always very important to me and convince my parents to let me take this gap year, which was really a gap. Six months. I felt like we were losing our country back in 2012. I felt like our generation was completely unaware of the type of intergenerational theft that was happening and the kind of decisions that were being made on our behalf or we were making in the ballot box.
So I started this organization, Turning Point USA on June four, the twenty twelve, no money, no connections and no idea what I was doing. A lot of energy and some sort of a vision to try to get started. And I just that's exactly what I did. I got started and I visited all sorts of different Tea Party rallies, Republican groups talking about how we needed to have a youth conservative organization that would really recapture this country and really re-educate my my generation in particular.
Never actually thought it would work, but I thought that we would make some sort of an impact. And I didn't even know what success looked like. And for those of you that have been entrepreneurs, you know exactly that feeling. You just get started and you kind of God takes you on a different path. So fast forward eight years now. It's been actually incredible and one of the most incredibly humbling journeys, actually. The individual helped me get started, passed away just last week.
Bill Montgomery, it was the first person I called in June of 2012, and he believed in me when I was an eighteen year old when he had no reason to. By the way, when everyone said, go to college, go sit in line, stop doing your doing, go get a degree. No one's gonna take you seriously. I mean, everybody told me to except this guy. And he was an incredible mentor and friend of mine.
And so, yeah, look, the God has had his hand on our journey eight years later on today in high school and college campuses across the country, we have done something that everyone thought was impossible. We've organized hundreds of thousands of young people in the places that, quite honestly, are the most hostile to conservative, reasonable, pro-American, patriotic ideas. We have a great relationship through our political arm with the president. Just last month, we had three thousand four hundred students in Phoenix, Arizona, in the midst of a pandemic of seven degrees outside hosting an event for the United States.
Absolutely incredible. Not one seat open. Joe Biden couldn't have like 50 people show up, you know, even without a pandemic, and so there's something very special happening and I've just been blessed to be on this journey, and I really think that we're just getting started. Well. I don't even know I don't think you know this, but I grabbed a clip just a minute and a half, just one of your interactions that I want to show, because not everybody's seen you in action.
I thought, let's just show one and then we'll talk about that and sort of what you're doing.
Israel has done nothing but defended their borders since they're since their legal declaration of existence in Israel, Lebanon.
And I was there as a defensive measure when Hezbollah, the terrorists started attacking them from the north. Hezbollah is a recognized international terrorist organization. Israel should do everything they possibly can to obliterate Hezbollah. Are you surprised or happy? You have plenty. If you're going to argue, if you're going to argue from a authority, that's a logical fallacy. Tell me why I'm wrong. Don't tell me how many degrees you have asked me to change the conversation. Actually, I would I would argue I'm more informed because I didn't go to college and I've traveled the world and I've met with world leaders and I've read many books.
So tell me, how am I oppressive? Can you name one example of how oppressive? Can you name one name, one example of how oppressive? Because you just said it. They just don't have facts. Can you tell me one time that I've been wrong about anything I've said? Tell me a time that Israel has launched an offensive war. They're attacking Hezbollah that was within their border with Lebanon. They don't just attack Hezbollah occupied southern Lebanon, which is Iranian funded, is it not?
I have no idea. Thank you for any time. Maybe if you didn't go to college, you would learn more.
So that's one of the more severe ones. But, you know, there's there's ones I mean, I could have shown when you walked in front of the Cavenagh protesters, that was. Yeah. So tell people a little bit about what what you what you do, what turning point does, the kind of things you walk into the danger sometimes. I don't want them to feel your world a little bit. Thank you. So our whole philosophy of Turning Point USA people say, what is your mission statement?
We play offense with a sense of urgency to win America's culture war. Our entire modus operandi is we're tired of managing a declining culture. We're tired of just trying to play defense on the terms of the left. Unlike most conservative organizations and pundits out there that are happy to prognosticate about the best analysis of the decline of America, we actually not accepting the premise. Like we don't actually accept the premise that this country has to go into inevitable decline. And so because of that, we play offense.
And so the entire premise of what we do is that college campuses have become islands of totalitarianism. They're infecting the next generation around the most sinister, malevolent, backwards ideas imaginable. And we are going to go on the college campuses physically, culturally and in every way you could possibly imagine and organize. Young conservatives talk about indistinguishable truth and irrefutable truth will do so civilly. I mean, I put myself out there, right there on a college campus, as you saw, that was University of Connecticut.
No conservative in their right mind would ever do such a thing as go to Storrs, Connecticut, set up a coffee table. But what's been amazing and you done me always I always wear the jersey of the campus. I'm going to it makes the potential for a physical retaliation, far less, which I've been through plenty of times. Trust me, I've been stormed out of restaurants and I've been dealing with antifa for years and I could tell you all about them.
But what really captured there and that's one of the many clips that has been seen tens of millions of times. My personal content has been seen over seven hundred and fifty million times, turning point USA, well over two billion times. And that doesn't even count some of the stuff we're actually doing on the ground. But it's really important because the left, they despise what we are doing, because what you saw right there is actually one of the reasons why America was actually able to exist for so long is the collision of ideas in the marketplace of ideas which college is not.
By the way, it just dismissed that out of your entire get that out of your mind. If you think college is a place for civil discussion exists. And a lot of people say, oh, yeah, my my child is going to be exposed to all sorts of different ideas, all sorts of different Marxist ideas. Absolutely. All sorts of different anti-American ideas. But that individual is just one example. And again, I have probably 2000 videos like that.
I personally travel absent the pandemic and I'm actually making up for it because we've been traveling nonstop. Three hundred and thirty days a year. I visit over fifty five campuses personally. We host over eight hundred and fifty campus events a year. We have over twenty thousand students attend our events off campus every single year, which include the largest black leadership at Black Leadership Summit, Hispanic and Women's Leadership Summit. And look, we have a country that right now is teetering on the brink.
It's either going to go a direction that none of us want, want it to go, or we can reassert first principles. And one thing that we don't talk about is that if you want to see the direction the country is going, just look at where the sixteen seven. The 18 year olds are and so if you go straight to the campuses and let's just be honest, that's not good. I mean, we have as a generation decided the best decision is to put six million of our smartest people into indoctrination factories, to learn from 4000 professors that are all bitter, resentful and arrogant.
And that's a really that's a that's a recipe for disaster. The way we fix that is to go straight into that place of indoctrination and the amount of people, Caleigh, young people that say, Charlie, I was a liberal, now I'm a conservative. Charlie, I never heard that before. I've never heard one nice thing said about America on my four years at Boulder, Colorado State, at University of Texas, at Texas A&M. And yes, I know there's a lot of Texans in here.
I'm happy to talk about any school in the country because I've visited almost every and I'm aware of a lot of them that it is widespread. And so we've had a lot of success. We're just getting started. The future of our country really depends on our ability to communicate our values to the next generation that will soon be in charge of this country. And our failure to do that will mean that Alexandrea guys do Cortez's nothing but a preview of the type of country, the leadership of this country, what's to come.
You mentioned something there a lot of people don't know about, which is your effort to focus on colleges that need to be divested. Yes. Tell tell them about that, about what that is. And maybe is there a place online where they can go look at the colleges or your information? There is. And this has been, I think, mislabeled as probably an overly controversial project. Again, the people labeling that I get attacked every day. So it really doesn't bother me that much.
But look, our our viewpoint is this. If you are someone that cares deeply about the future of America and freedoms in the Constitution, you should not be voluntarily giving over your hard earned money unrestricted to places where their mission statement is to make sure this civilization no longer exists. That's probably a pretty simple equation. So thank you. Yeah. And so now I mean, no offense to anyone in this room because I know there's a lot of people that have given big gifts to higher education in this.
So I want to just preface it by saying this is not an attack on people that have done. Instead, it's an honest observation that the unrestricted gift model where Harvard is now sitting on forty one billion dollars, which is a bigger endowment than the than the combined GDP of Hungary, that's probably they probably don't care what anyone thinks and they're going to become the most liberal institution they possibly can. Right. So our whole idea is how do we get decent Americans, reasonable Americans, business people to say I'm no longer going to give these massive seven figure checks to higher education?
If what you are producing is bitter, resentful, arrogant, angry people that want to destroy our history and quite honestly hate the very civilization that has given them so much opportunity. If you're creating ungrateful people and not thankful people, we should take a pause and ask why exactly that's happening. And what we have found and discovered through mountains of research is these universities actually they depend on the unrestricted flow of their alumni is one of the main reasons they've been able to have these professors that have nothing but bad ideas, given credit, credibility and a platform is because they sit on these massive endowments and they're able to start these new schools of North African lesbian poetry or some ridiculous nonsense that they're teaching your kids or, you know, how to destroy your country now.
OK, great. I got that. OK, but we learn that in high school, and so we are celebrating donors that divest their dollars from higher education. And so far in just three weeks, we have successfully divested thirty million dollars over fifteen schools across the country and from the biggest schools, including some in Texas, some across Harvard, Yale University, Southern California. And look, divestment is a tactic, right? So divestment is something that the left has used against us for decades.
It's not a tactic I necessarily would choose as my first selection, but it is unbelievably effective. And you would not eat you would not go to a religious service or to a restaurant. If you do. The proceeds were going to Planned Parenthood, right? You wouldn't do that. Then why would you give millions of dollars to a college where the proceeds are creating people that want to make sure Planned Parenthood gets more money? That's so that's a very simple way to look at it.
And so, look, it's there's a lot of reasons why people do it. And I understand it. Just a broader perspective, though, is until we use divestment as a tactic, which the left has, these universities will never reform themselves in places that respect free speech, where I do not have to walk onto a college campus with fifteen armed guards, which is the average amount of I cannot go on a college campus without secure armament. Something as if I'm ready to launch a coup against a Central American country, right?
I mean, I've had I've had helicopter support before, snipers on the rooftop, you know, drone surveillance, you name it, because I have to go to college campus. And my message is very clear. I'm unafraid to say God is real. Jesus is the son of God. There are only two genders. America is the greatest country ever to exist in the history of the world. Donald Trump is a great president. We should build a wall and that our republic is worth saving.
And if that's too controversial and you have to go to a safe space and you all of a sudden have to resort to violence, your institution has failed you. And quite honestly, you are not on a path towards, I think, a flourishing or fulfilling life.
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Obviously there's this cancela culture going on right now of people being fired, being intimidated, being bullied did not express their opinion, which is anit. It's as anti-American as anything. I can think of the not had the exchange of ideas. How do you see that. What do you think the solution is to it? I mean, I think this started on college campuses. It's exactly right. And so I kind of want to build out this argument more of the importance that what we are doing on the campuses for years, we viewed campuses in the 60s and 70s.
And you remember all the protests. It's not necessarily anything new, but we once viewed campuses as almost a nuclear spill like Chernobyl. Right. So it's bad. We're going to wall it off. You go wear a hazmat suit and try to survive and get a job. Right. And so we always knew these places were bad, but we felt that the kids could be unaffected if they put on the right gear metaphorically when an excuse this metaphor, because it's not exactly the right time to use it.
But it's actually a perfect metaphor. It's more like a virus, honestly, and it infects people and it's incredibly infectious and it doesn't just stay on the campus. And so one of the most Eye-Opening things for me and I encourage all of you to look very closely at this is how incredibly against our country, corporate America is. And it's a hard thing for me to admit as a capitalist and as someone that enjoys entrepreneurial stories. But when I see Bank of America commit one billion dollars to BLM, I ask myself, what side are you on?
Bank of America? When PepsiCo dedicates four hundred million dollars to BLM, I ask myself, who are you really representing? When the National Basketball Association goes out of its way to attack our police officers and they won't say one word about the one million Muslims in concentration camps of the Chinese Communist Party death camps, I ask myself the question, who are you representing? And so that's been a real eye opening, honestly, about our incidents, about cancel culture.
Well, what's happened is these H.R. departments and these corporate boardrooms are now being overrun by the these banks, the storming of the Bastille tactics that they perfected on a college campus. And so you take Tufts University in Boston. Anyone familiar with plots? It's a very good school, academically incredibly intolerant. I mean, they they are experts and specialists and making kids hate Israel and hate America. I've never probably one of the best institutions. I think Browns probably the best.
I spoke at Brown and I had to come in with, again, an entire standing army. So Tufts is really interesting because the Tufts is a feeder system to a lot of the best companies on the planet. It's it's almost an Ivy League school. Right. So five years, four or five years ago, the Tufts radicals, they stormed the president's office. Right. And they got all these listed demands and inside the president's office saying, get out of my office, I'm going to kick you out of school.
He capitulated, of course, and was weak. And if you ever experience infant infantile. Behaviour, the worst thing you could do is to pander, and I think we've learned that any of you that are parents know that you have to have discipline in order and structure in some sort of accountability. Anyway, where did those tough kids go? Well, they they know staff, Bank of America and PepsiCo and the tactics that they once used to extort their college president they're now using to extort the CEO of a Fortune 500 company.
I mean, the radicalism that we have seen on these campuses has now infected every single portion of civilized society, including our churches. By the way, I could go on at length about how our churches have become infected by just people that care much more about America becoming Marxists and America becoming Christian. And that's that's a separate point. But you see the cancer culture, and I call it even worse than that, it's almost like social assassination. Where have you?
You cannot say if you work out if you work at one of the companies in the Dow 30. Right. The top 30 companies on the Dow. If you add any of those companies say that you support Donald Trump, you will lose your job. It is that simple. And now this is corporate America. I mean, not just on college campuses. We are now living in a society of what I really call the most dangerous mixture of fascist authoritarianism we could possibly imagine culturally, where if you were to make America great again, hat on a certain campus, you will end up in the hospital.
It's not a question. And the person who does that to you will probably not be held accountable. And we've had this happen to many students, right, where the campuses will not arrest them. They will not find the kids. We've had kid knocked out cold on the University of California, Berkeley, that gets firebombed. It's a lane we've had kids bear sprayed in the face of our city high school and right near Deer Valley, Utah. Not overexaggeration, not an alarmist.
And so, yeah, it's a very troubling thing. How do you fight back against the it? That's part of the personal role that I play. Quite honestly. I say things so other that other people can't. I take the arrows for a lot of people that are not allowed to speak out. I get journalists attack me every single day. I'm one of the most targeted people under the age of thirty five on the planet for this reason, because I'm not afraid, I'm not afraid to say all lives matter.
I'm not afraid to say that BLM Inc is actually selling racial division in our country. I'm not afraid to say we only take a knee to Jesus Christ, our Lord. Not that some arbitrary cause that corporate America wants us to believe in. And so that's part of the solution. But I mean, look, a recent survey says that seventy one percent of people under the age of 30 say if they speak their mind, they're going to lose their life, that that's not our country.
In fact, it's actually less in most European countries. Like in most European countries, they actually have like 30 percent of people under the age of 30 think if they speak their mind, they'll lose. We have become a very bizarre fashion of Fidel Castro's Cuba with Mao's Red Guard. Culturally, we really have. And the only way you fight back against that is with courageous people that are unafraid of the cost and are willing to stand unified with other courageous people and stand up against the tyrants.
That's the only way you can fight. It's not the hope it gets better. It's not that, oh, things are going to go back to the new normal or these people like, oh, we just have to wait it out. Things are going to self correct. There's no evidence like people who say what kind of evidence are you looking at? Like that things are just always going to go back to the way they were. What historical paradigm are you operating on?
Yeah, OK. Lenin takes power in the Soviet Union. Yeah. They're going to go back to the SARS, like, OK, that took eighty years and sixty million people being killed. I mean, you can lose civilization really quickly and we need to recognize that. And so how do you fight back against it? We stop supporting the people that do it and then we also need more more people being vocal against it. Yeah, that's great.
I mean, I think the thing that's not talked about a lot is the cancer culture. People are cowards. They don't want discussion. They're scared of a discussion. And so they're bullies. They try to silence people. And the only way to deal with bullies is to stand up to them. I mean, that's the only way you stop it.
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But online, your online wagering experts, you're you know, you've probably got two million followers on Twitter and Facebook. You got a huge number. I mean, you're very well involved in the social media. And obviously there's a huge war going on censorship wise there. Well, how do you see that? I mean, you're probably one of the better experts on what's going on there. So I'm a free market capitalist. I am. And I think we should break up the tech.
Go figure that one. And so I love the free market because I love my country, I patriotism, then I love the economy if I have to rank it, I love Jesus Christ above my country and one informs the other. Right. So I love liberty. And you should, too. First liberty. So when all of a sudden people's liberties are starting to get infringed, we should just take a plot? I think that's a fair assessment.
One of the reasons why we like limited government is because big government will infringe on people's liberties. By definition, what happens when a company's more powerful than your government? What happens if a company has amassed more power than every other government in the history of the planet and they won't talk to you, you have no due process rights, what do you do then? What is the proper course of action? So if you reread the Federalist Papers, I always try to go back to the roots of our country.
I think that there was such wisdom in that period of time. It was such a deliberate process. They went through. The founders were really worried about tyranny. And the biggest tyranny that they could think up was governmental tyranny and so understandably, but what if I told you that Google Glass, at how unsophisticated our government is, that Google is far more powerful than the Pentagon? Like it's not even close. Google knows everything about all every one of you.
And you're like, why don't use Google, use YouTube? You purchase anything on the Internet? You've ever had an email sent from a Gmail account, all that is stored in their files. They know your location. They know your habits. They know how you act, all of it. OK, you say, well, that's not a big deal, OK? If you trust a bunch of people that are godless, secular Marxists have that much power that maybe you don't believe in limited because that's why we believe in limited government, right?
We believe in due process. If Google kicks me off tomorrow on YouTube, I have a successful YouTube channel. What's my due process rights? I can't sue. I could see the government if they actually shut me up. That's my first liberty exists. I have no rights with Google. None, zero their private company rights. They can do whatever they want. Do you think that 92 percent of search results are too much? I do. I think that's a monopoly.
I think if you have ninety two percent of anything, you should probably, like, not have that much. Dr. Robert Epstein, who is a Biden supporting formerly Hillary Clinton supporter, testified in front of Congress under oath. And he said, I have been a lifelong studier of the Internet and of search engine manipulation. He says that Google manipulated at least two million votes in the twenty eighteen midterm and manipulated at least four million votes in 2016, and they will manipulate up to 10 million in 2020.
How do you how does that happen? You say I'll give you a great example. Try to type in Breitbart to your Google search tonight and find out if any Breitbart link shows up doesn't happen. They have deleted Breitbart from the they just decided they should no longer exist. Do you think anyone should have that kind of power? No, the answer is absolutely not. I don't care if you're a private corporation or the government of Venezuela that is evil.
You should not have the power to eliminate ideas. And you say, well, they're private company is another search engine. Let's be a little more realistic. They control 92 percent of all search results. They control the number one video processing site on the planet of YouTube that gets over three billion views a day on their platform. So let's just be realistic about what we're actually dealing with. Not to mention they're building a fibre network all across our country.
They have more medical data than any other private company. And soon to be that they have more drone technology, they have driverless cars, and they're just getting started into e-commerce. They also have the number one email processing platform, the number one cloud sharing platform, Google Drive, which all your kids probably use if they're in public school and they have the number one search engine browser, Google Chrome. At some point you should say, well, we don't know their motives actually do.
We have leaked video from Google right after the 2016 election where they said we are not going to allow Donald Trump to get re-elected. So we know their motives, we know what they believe. And so that, by the way, they are staffed by people that all went to these very same university. It's not like they stop believing in this stuff as soon as they get this power. And I mean, Lord Acton said this absolute power corrupts absolutely what Google has that absolute power.
And trust me, I don't love the government. I'm a huge government skeptic, but I don't love the government because I love free people and I love liberty. That's why we're all here. And I'm telling you right now, the liberty of millions of people are being violated hourly by this small this company of small ruling class elites in Silicon Valley that if they have their way in ten years, this country will be remade into the government of Google's image.
So, yeah, I am more aware of this than most people. I, I tend to not be alarmist. I did not come at that conclusion lightly because I think that we should use government power rarely. But I think that we have in 1890 Sherman Antitrust Act for a reason. I support what the Republican President Teddy Roosevelt did in the nineteen hundreds to break up a lot of the monopolies that were controlling some of our industrial capacity. And I think because of that, we actually had a flourishing middle class.
I think that's actually a good thing. And I think that we should be unafraid to use that power when it comes to a company that controls 92 percent of all search results, which is literally the exploration of ideas. And Orwell said about George Orwell, he said, if they can get you to stop seeing something and thinking something, that thing will stop existing. I'm not OK with a small company.
Have you mentioned you mentioned a couple of the president does and. You become friends with the president. I mean, the president calls you out crowd no, I mean, you're a 20 something year old guy and the president, you know, likes you. You didn't start out that way. I don't think you like the president. Tell the story of how that happened, how you were kind of not sure this is the guy I would want to get behind.
And I think now you've written a book. Yeah, look, I was never anti Trump or never Trump. I was Trump confused. I think that's the right term was a lot of people or I was young and quite get it. That's OK. I think we should say that I wasn't like a pathological opposition person. I was a Scott Walker guy. I knew the Walker family growing up in the Midwest of our country and I helped him with his recall election.
I think Scott Walker was a phenomenal governor of Wisconsin. Then I became a Cruz guy, three still conservative. That's who I am. And I was drawn very I'll never forget, you know, I really didn't quite get the Trump movement or the Trump thing. It's called the Trump thing. It's total understatement until I until kind of the end of the Cruz Trump out, back and forth where I remember a friend of mine who was completely uninvolved in politics all of a sudden became the biggest Trump supporter.
And like, what what what what is he saying that communicates? He said, Washington, D.C. could not care less about me. And there's finally someone who's going to go there and do something different. Well, that's interesting. So Trump became the nominee and it wasn't even a question I got all in behind. I said we have to beat Hillary. And I still didn't quite understand the movement, to be honest. I did. And and I was I was born and bred in doctrinaire Washington, D.C., produced some libertarian economics, to be honest.
Right. Where if you could not recite the 15 chapters of Free to Choose my Milton Friedman, you were like a heretic. OK, that's basically the type of libertarian circles that I came up. If you didn't know about me, Sister Mary Rothbart. And I think they're smart, that's fine. But all of a sudden you were like, no, you can't be in politics. And so I was like, come on, this is what is this guy?
You know, I couldn't quite understand it. So he gets the nomination. I speak at the convention. I was very positive. And then I met Donald Trump Jr. and I felt really moved. I said, we have to do something to get the president elected. And I volunteered my time. I went to Don Junior and I said, Don, I want to help. I want to help run the youth operation. And I'm willing to take a leave from thirty point USA to go help run the youth operation of the twenty sixteen Trump campaign.
And he said, sure, come with me on this day. It was like in two days and I started traveling with Don. Yes, it was that easy. There was no hiring process. There was no infrastructure. People say we colluded like we were getting Cleveland and Cincinnati screwed up. OK, so it's like collusion would not we couldn't order a cheeseburger, let alone collude with a foreign government. And so I traveled the country. Then I really started.
Understand? I started to go with Don to Michigan and Wisconsin, Ohio, and I spent time privately with people that said. We have more people in opioid clinics than employed in our county. I was like, what? As I was told, everything's going great because we shipped all our jobs to China. And that's what that's what they teach you when you when you're in early stage of Republican politics, they're like everything's great. Is the GDP's going up?
And I love GDP, trust me, but I think that we actually we're losing the soul of a country, we should take pause. And I think that we actually weren't looking at a full picture of our country and they were saying Donald Trump's the only person to talk about bringing dignity back to this part of the country, really. And I started to totally get that. I went from kind of a, you know, Cruz guy that was supporting Trump to all of a sudden, wow, OK, to pastors that were like, my church is going to go under because there's no one to advertise anymore, because everything is shut down and the fabric of Youngstown, Ohio, is gone.
That is really so. So anyway, point is, travel the country. We did a lot of fun things with Don. We hosted youth events in places we were supposed to, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, with my friend Gentry Beach and Tommy Hicks. We did some crazy and wild things and got the president won in a surprise fashion. And I became very close with him and the family and and a lot of different ways of understood what this movement represents.
I probably talked to more grassroots voters than most people ever will travel. The country understood different perspectives and the kind of put it all in one piece, it's this guy is a vessel for our for decent America that quite honestly, has been taken advantage, taken advantage of by a bipartisan group of Cartwell elites for a couple of decades that we have been told the decisions that were being made were, of course, sit down and shut up and do not question.
It's a good thing that China is beating us and it's a good thing that we're in the World Trade Organization. It's a good thing that we keep on invading countries halfway across the world. And Donald Trump challenged that. Donald Trump allowed us to question the elites in both parties for the first time in a long time. And not only that, he actually did what he said he was going to do, which was so miraculous, is that he had a list of judges.
He actually stuck to it. Corvington on Gorsuch have ruled correctly on all these religious freedom challenges except one. I think Gorsuch ruled incorrectly on the LGBT one, if I'm not mistaken. But Roberts has been a write off. But President Trump moved. President Trump moved the embassy to Jerusalem. Let me recognize the Golan Heights. He cancelled the Iran deal. Most pro-life president in American history. I understand it's very perplexing and puzzling for Christians out there because they say, wait a second, what you're trying to tell me that the three times married, twice divorced cover the Playboy magazine Billy Bush tape, guys, the most pro-life president, American history like.
Yes, get used to it because God God uses people in mysterious ways. Like, that's exactly right. So the guy that said that two Corinthians walk into a bar when he was cited citing a Bible verse, seriously, that's the guy that's going to come on a white horse and put on two hundred circuit court judges to make it possible for Kelly to go to fight to defend religious liberty. Yes, that's right. Because God you, Samson, God used David, God you, Cyrus, and God is using a billionaire from New York or came down on the golden escalator who's willing to be prayed over to have a Christian vice president who says he loves the evangelical community that is open to the word of God that is willing to fight for it, which is nice and refreshing, not just allowed to be a doorstop every time the left wants to do something to your like.
Well, I guess we have to capitulate to that one. Who stood by Brett Kavanaugh when he was wrongly accused of all those things, someone who's been the greatest friend of faith of any president in my life. I think that's someone who's worthy of praise re-election, and we have to get full, fully, fully behind his effort for another four years of our country, and I only touched on the surface of some of his accomplishments.
I think one of the things probably everybody wants to know is you're working hard in, you know, for the future of the youth of this country, how do you see the future? Are you hopeful? Are you making progress? You know, how do you analyze how you're doing and how you see the future there? So it's a great question. And I get this a lot. People say, Chahal, you optimistic or pessimistic? And I have a policy to actually answer things honestly.
So unlike most people in the work that I do where they just tell you what you want to hear. But before I answer the question, I always make sure that when people ask it, they're not and they're not asking it for an excuse not to fight anymore. And I think that some people that want me to say that I'm pessimistic and they can say, OK, so I can stop fighting, I can go back to my life and retreat to the hills.
No, no matter, it's actually irrelevant whether you're optimistic or pessimistic. Or how hard you should fight. You think that the people storming the beach at D-Day were optimistic about their chances that day? I don't think so, but they did it anyway because it was the moral thing to do to go to fight a great tyranny. So here's here's the honest answer. I'm very optimistic about certain things. I'm incredibly worried about a couple of things. We'll start with the worry.
Then I'll get to the OP. How about that? I'm incredibly worried about first and foremost, I think that we're actually coming up against some very serious economic headwinds that no one wants to talk about in conservative circles. This is one of my biggest critiques of the Senate Republicans in the House Republicans. They refuse to have a conversation that a portion of America, specifically recent college graduates under the age of thirty five, are actually not doing as well as their parents economically.
It is a hard conversation to have, but it is brutally true when you when you do not have twenty nine, thirty and thirty one year olds after five years post college, their net worth is negative. Thirty thousand dollars. And they can't buy a car, let alone take a girl out on a date, let alone buy an apartment. Don't be surprised when they start smashing your cities. Don't be surprised when all of a sudden all those bad ideas that they were taught five years ago start actually turning into real action.
So it's a mixture, of course, the cultural indoctrination, but it's also very serious economic reality that we just quite honestly, we have to settle the GDP's going up, unemployment is low, everything is great. That's just not true, just as there's entire parts of the American population and that they were getting better under the Trump economy if we could have sustained it. But we decided to lock down our country, which hurt middle income earners. And I understand there was some reason I'm not saying it's just true that middle income earners, especially young people, we are on the precipice of something that is very dangerous.
And I'm not talking about just the cultural indoctrination. You ask anyone that lived through the Cuban Revolution back, go read Dostoyevsky, who read who wrote The Gulag Archipelago, which was the number one book that brought down the Soviet Union. You read anyone that has lived through a Marxist revolution in the 20th century. It is disgruntled. Twenty five and twenty six year olds that you have to watch out for. They're the ones that can bring down your civilization.
Do not take this lightly. So if all of a sudden they don't believe that the system works for them, take that very seriously. And some of it's complete rubbish, by the way, some of them have to get their act together, they got to work harder and all that, some of them may actually have been convinced, go borrow eighty thousand dollars to go study North American migratory bird studies and go move to Seattle. And your life is going to improve.
They go become a barista where 40 percent of recent college graduates, according to the New York Federal Reserve, 40 percent of recent college graduates. Are in jobs that don't require a college degree, so they have all this debt and they're not getting anything for nothing, according to the federal government, which is the number one holder of student loan debt, most students are not even getting close to paying the principal their student loan debt. They barely can even service the debt.
They're barely even touching the interest. The average age of someone that is debt free is fifty nine years old, takes them that long to pay it off. That doesn't count medical debt, card debt, mortgage debt. So we have leveraged an entire generation, not to mention the national debt and the hyperinflation. That's probably going to happen because we've decided creating five trillion dollars out of thin air is a good idea, which I completely morally and economically oppose what Congress is doing to continue to create money out of thin air.
It's going to hurt young people. It just will. And so that that's actually what worries me the most. And in a very sinister way, I kind of understand why they're pushing weed on our society so much like, of course, they want everyone to do marijuana. They're about to they're about to revolt against you. Of course, you want them to be on marijuana all the time like this. You guess it makes I actually think it's reprehensible to legalize it, but it makes perfect sense why the ruling class wants everyone to be on weed like it's a lot easier to control them.
Like it's a lot less likely they're going to burn down everything. And I take that I actually say that half kiddingly. And so I'm really worried about that because now all of a sudden when I talk to young people thirty one and thirty two year olds, especially in these urban clusters, they don't think the system works for them. When you guys were seven years out of college, you probably thought the system was generally working if you kept working hard.
So that's something that's an alarm bell that we got to fix. We got to do it quickly. I have some ideas to do that. Why am I optimistic about I'm optimistic about a couple of things. Number one, we have truth on our side. Let them control everything. They control the institutions. They control the tech companies. They control them megacorporations. They control this. We do have truth. And one sentence of truth can defeat a lifetime of lies, one sentence of truth.
I've seen it happen. It is like revival style. Billy Graham. Unbelievable. One sentence of talking about irrefutable truth with conviction can get someone completely converted. I'm also optimistic that the the furthest extension of a left wing worldview is actually really miserable people. And we are seeing records, amount of people that are coming towards us looking for how am I supposed to live my life. I've been told that I shouldn't indulge myself with every sort of substance, no moral code, and God doesn't exist.
I'm a really unhappy person. Like, it's funny that actually work that way. OK, there's a reason why this worked like two thousand years, because God gave us these laws because he actually loved us, not because he wanted to be a fun police. Right. Because he wanted you to be able to live peaceable and quiet lives. As Paul said in First Timothy, these these laws are there for a reason. So you can actually survive as a species.
And so I'm actually optimistic about it, because if you have the amount of it's almost religious is what the left has become, they've almost created religion out of their core beliefs that you're going to see in some ways an opening. So I'm very optimistic about it. But if I were to say something I'm worried about, I mean, we are on pace to have six hundred thousand less babies next year than this year. We are seeing a population collapse, the likes of which we've never seen.
It was in Bloomberg the other day and I I'm doing a whole podcast on it tomorrow. This is one of the unbelievably dishonest or activist media is did you know that we are on pace to have six hundred thousand less children? That's an unbelievable that should be like the front page of every newspaper. That's a population collapse that none of us are prepared for. Now, you might say, why is that? Well, number one, your young men are not dating, let alone married or because you've been telling our young men are the worst things on the planet since they were five years old and that they're guilty until proven innocent and sit down and shut up and OK.
Well, then they become they become basically feminized men and they have no direction. No. Two, they have no resources to be able to marry. Number three, a lot of young people do not want to bring children into this world because they see the world around them burning. And they're like, why do I want to continue to bring people into this awful existence? Because they're so nihilistic. And number four is that we, quite honestly, are not making it easy to build a family in nineteen eighty five.
And I don't want to go too far in the time, but in nineteen eighty five you could support a family of four with thirty five weeks of work. Thirty five weeks of work. Now in order to support a family of four it takes fifty four weeks of work. What does that mean. You actually the women have to go into the workforce now. I'm not against that but it makes it impossible to have four kids and you just can't do it unless you're in the ruling class and you have savings and you have intergenerational well, especially the cost of health care, student loan, all this, all this sort of intergenerational.
And boy, I mean, if I was a socialist, I couldn't have designed a better set of economic circumstances for that. But here's the opening. Is that. If we are able to win this election and if what we are doing continues to work, I think we can actually see a revival, the likes of which the left is not anticipating, where people are going to be saying what does it mean to live a meaningful life? And my answer actually might be kind of boring on the surface, but they've never heard this.
Want to hear it, stop doing drugs and stop drinking, be loyal to a singular human being, go find a job, tell the truth, and at the very least, don't lie. And do that for a decade and tell me if you're fulfilled or not, they've never heard that. They've heard the opposite. They've heard destroy everything around you. Everything is a mistake. You live in an oppressive place and you're the most important thing. You are your own God.
Well, that's where you get miserable people. So I'm actually optimistic that the pendulum back from that is actually going to create an opening for us to be able. I think there's a revival happening that's about to happen. I really do call me, you know, brutally bullish or whatever. I actually think we're going to see a third American third or fourth. This is the third. It depends if you count Billy Graham. Survival is one. I think I actually think we're about to see more people come to Christ than any other time per percentage in American history.
I really do.
Last last question, because we go on all night, but what do you see? I mean, we're talking about religious liberty. What do you see as the future for religious liberty? I know you've been visiting you were just with Jakobs. And in California, you're talking with pastors. I mean, how do you see the future for religiously. Yeah. How much time you got, by the way, this this conversation will be rebroadcast tomorrow morning on my podcast.
Kelly was nice enough to allow this conversation. I only did one podcast that I do today. And so this is me doing my podcast. So thank you for being a live audience. Look, there's a crisis happening in Christianity, the likes of which no one wants to talk about. There are some amazing pastors out there. I say them in every speech, Jakob's God bless John MacArthur for opening up his church. He might get arrested, but God bless him for that.
Pastor Rob McCoy from Thousand Oaks is my pastor who never closed his church and a couple others that are very courageous, Jerry Falwell Jr., who is not a pastor, but he runs a Liberty University and he never closed his campus and they had zero cases of covid-19 got honored. That bold decision, and I appreciate him for that. But beyond that, there's a crisis in Christianity where we saw more Christian churches get more involved in BLM than they ever did for the fight for life, where most of the funding came from Christian WOAK celebrity pastors that were mobilizing their congregation around a lie, which is that we're a bitter, racist country, actually systemically on racist and we're systemically decent.
So they mobilize their congregation in the streets to go protest an institutional lie, so that was really incredibly disheartening. I see more pastors speaking out. I think they need to do a lot of pastors say a couple of things that I shouldn't get involved in politics. Outrageous statement. Number two, I can't defy authority because of Romans 13, complete and total misinterpretation of Romans 13. We are the sovereign, says we, the people in our documents. We don't have a Nero, we don't have a king.
So therefore, we, the people actually determine which laws are just and are not just. And if there was an immoral law, you have absolutely a biblical and theological not just. Right. A prerogative to defy that law, especially the misapplication of the law. When you allow indulgences like casinos and marijuana, shops remain open and we can't go to church on Easter Sunday. And the fact the church was OK with this, not all, but too many were far OK with this.
And that very much troubles me. So religious liberty, I think it's really interesting. I think it begs the question, what is religion? And we haven't had this conversation a long time in our country. And Kelly, you might not agree with me on this, but not because it's that far might just be a semantical disagreement. But I actually think that atheism is a religion and this is a hotly contested debate among certain circles. I think that atheism is the fastest growing religion in America, that I see more people proselytizing and evangelizing to believe in nothing more than believing in Christ, that the boldness of the atheists and the humanists to get in the courts, if it wasn't for Kelly is incredible amount of money they spend to make sure that God doesn't exist.
They do it with religious fervor. They've agreed upon theology, nothing. They've agreed upon funding mechanisms. They all, for all intents and purposes, they are religious. Right. And so what's really interesting is that they don't believe in separation of church and state. They don't they believe in the abolition of the church and only the state. So we've got to stop giving them even that much rope because they start like at the separation of church and state.
First of all, never in the Constitution written a singular letter by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Convention. Is that right? Association. Association. It's close. I'll get there in a couple of decades, get the history right. It's a mess. And it's no, it's nowhere in our document. And so the future religious liberty really lies in people like Kelly and first Liberty's capacity to fight. I mean, what Kelly's first, but he's able to do with the budget they have versus the ACLU, which raised fifty percent of their budget, plus fifty percent.
Twenty four hours post Trump's inauguration. Is that fair to say? Is incredible. And look, there there is a very determined, diabolical pathological campaign where they know that they have studied the playbook of Stalin and Lenin and Castro and Mao. And the one thing they all had in common is you got to shut up the church. You have to in order to get the power grab that they desire, the church has to go. It's got to be abolished.
How do you do that? Tied up in the courts? You demonize it and you infiltrate it. Well, the infiltration has happened through once and once Christian institutions that call themselves Wheaton College and Calvin College and all that. I mean, you talk about the most leftist universities in the college and the country. Oh, my gosh. Go to these theological seminaries that call themselves Christian seminaries. And they are the ones that are driving this. You wouldn't believe they're infiltrating churches all across the country.
Then they also intimidate us to not fight. And finally, they are they do a full frontal attack, try to make it illegal for us to practice our if they had a button right here, this is the biggest difference between us and they had a button to shut down all the churches. They would press it. If we had a button to shut up all the atheists, we would not push it. A very big difference. We look at the atheists as an opportunity.
They look at us as an obstacle. It's a very important distinction. So if we look at as an atheist, it's like, wow, that person could one day be in heaven with. They look at us and say they're getting in the way of my power grab. Well, that is not an equal moral plan. We have to be more clear about how we distinguish when we categorize that. So, look, the future of religious liberty is to be determined.
Actually, I'm incredibly optimistic about fighters. I think we don't have enough fighters right now. We don't. Keli's one of them. As those first liberty would have been really easy for you to kind of just do nothing during all of this, because that's what most people did in this kind of space, or they just filed every lawsuit under the sun recklessly, which actually set us back a different way. Don't get me started on that. But, yeah, look.
We have to fight, and that's one of the things that we as Christians have to recognize is the defense of the faith is so necessary. Christianity does not call us to be pacifists. That is one of the main lines ever. We have to be fervent in our debate, in our defense of whatsoever is true, as Paul tells us. And Philip Lippmann's whatsoever is loving whatsoever. Is the five year old in Orlando that's trying to pray to our creator that's being shut down by a tyrant that is immoral, that is evil, and that's what we have, a court system.
And so here's my final point. My optimistic point to kind of close it. All of this is that the left there are a bunch of cowards. I deal with these people every day. I have to walk around with armed guards. I wish I didn't have received death threats, FBI, you name it. I've dealt with it all. OK, so I'm not saying that as a victim, not saying feel sorry for me, I embrace it.
Part of the fight. I know what I signed up for and I know it's coming. They're only going to try to ruin me more. Thankfully, I actually know that, so I can process. These people are the most miserable human beings you could deal with. They they truly do need you. I mean that in the most clear sense, like they need salvation. They need ultimate truth. However, when they are confronted, they scatter. They are not prepared for an active, vibrant, faith centered community that says you're not going to give it no more.
No, not one more. I actually think that there can be a counter to this, the likes of which they're not prepared for that can put them into ideological and cultural minority for the next couple of decades. All we have to do is activate. It's all we have to do. And so people say, well, what can I do to get involved? A couple of things. Everything you do now has to be political. I know that's a really hard thing to say.
The left has turned everything into twenty four seven three sixty five politics, where they shop, where they buy, what they do, what they say. Yes. What you have to be the same. I don't like it. You don't like it. It's the way it has to be. OK, so no more supporting megacorporations, let's say a billion dollars to blame if you so can do that, right. If that choice is there, then the other thing you could do is don't allow tyranny to go across your radar screen without you doing something about it.
What is doing something mean? Communication, dialogue. Confronting that tyranny head on. Eye to eye and saying what you are doing is using your strength to exploit the weak. It is immoral and I will not tolerate it with the power that is invested in me. They don't know how to process that. These are authoritarian, cowardly tyrants, that all they have to do is be confronted by decent, reasonable and courageous people. And then we can win.
I think there's a lot more of those than people know, amen, and we're going to see if they rise up. Thank you for all you're doing. Thank you, guys. OK, we're up. You're a hero. Thank you. Thank you guys so much for listening, please consider getting involved a turning point, USA at USA, Dotcom, that is T.P, USA Dotcom. E-mail me your questions. Freedom at Charlie Kirk Dotcom type and Charlie Kirk show to your podcast provider hit.
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