Shaping the Fate of the Free World – Our Role and Responsibility:
Eager to understand the roots of America and the ideals it stands for? Let’s embark on an enlightening journey as we explore the significance of these in the contemporary world. We introduce you to Rick Green’s new talk show, The Tavern, where we engage in stimulating conversation. We take a leaf out of our founding fathers’ book, revealing how their intellectual exchanges have set the bar for us today. We dive into the need for civic engagement and the role we play in shaping the fate of the free world.
Our journey doesn’t stop there. We move on to consider the safeguarding of our freedoms and the importance of their advocacy in public forums. John Lovell’s Warrior Poet concept comes into play as we delve into the lurking dangers of tyranny, and our responsibility during crises. Our guest, Patriot Academy leader Elias Coop-Gonzalez, offers a glimpse into his journey of fighting for freedom. We wrap up our discussion by reflecting on the profound influence politics has on American culture and freedom, and our responsibility as Warrior Poets in shaping our society. This episode serves as a reminder of our role in preserving the liberties enshrined in our Constitution for future generations.
Air Date: 09/27/2023
Guest: John Lovell and Elias Coop-Gonzalez
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Rick Green: 0:03
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture, it’s Wall Builders. We’re taking on the hot topics of the day from a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective. I’m Rick Green, America’s Constitution coach and former Texas legislator, and I’m here with David and Tim Barton normally. But today we’re going to do something a little bit different. We just launched last night my new talk show called the Tavern, with America’s Constitution Coach, and it’s on Warrior Poets Society Network. If you haven’t heard of that, you can look that up. Warrior Poets Society Network. John Lovell, we’ve had him on the program before to talk about his book, the Warrior Poet Way, and it’s basically, you know, if you’re part of the old Promise Keepers movement, you might remember Stu Weber’s book Tender Warrior. I gave it to every man in my wedding. It had a huge impact on me and I think that’s the right philosophy. It’s the King David kind of philosophy of you know being an artist and you know being able to be tender with your family but also to be a warrior and defend them and defend our nation. And so I love the Warrior Poet guys. John Lovell is doing a great job over there, so we teamed up with them to launch this new show called the Tavern and it launched last night and if you didn’t get a chance to see it, you can go to Warrior Poets Society Network. Or you can go to PatriotAcademy. com , actually go to PatriotAcademy. tv and there you can watch the Tavern. You got to subscribe or be one of our certified coaches, that’s a great way to get access or be one of our 1776’ers in our donor club. That’s $17.76 a month. Anyway, lots of ways you can get access to the show. But today I just wanted to give you a little teaser and share with you some of what was on the program last night. A little bit of my open about why I chose the name, the Tavern, and then a little bit of the interview with John Lovell, and then also a little taste of the interview with Elias Coop- Gonzalez, 21 year old, who’s in the West Virginia legislature and a longtime Patriot Academy student, been many, many times to Patriot Academy, started coming when he was 16, but I’ll let him tell the story here towards the end of the program. So anyway, let’s jump in. I’ll give you a little taste of the Tavern: What do you say to people when they question whether or not America is worth defending and reviving?
John Lovell: 2:20
I believe the ideals are worth fighting for. I think this is the world’s last freedom hold. Some people think of like well, it can’t get worse. Oh, you better believe it can. It can get wildly worse. If freedom falls here, the whole world will feel that impact. And even if you don’t feel like we should win, how else do you spend your last days and time but fighting for a great ideal, right?
Rick Green: 2:54
It’s time to bring back the taverns of the American Revolution. I think some topics are so weighty, so important, that you just cannot have that conversation without, you know, your favorite beverage, perhaps a good cigar. Sit around the campfire or, in this case, in the taverns, just like they did in the American Revolution. It’s vital that we start having civil discourse. So, whatever your poison, I’m going to go with coffee for tonight. We’ll see what I do next week. But get your favorite drink, maybe get a good cigar, and let’s begin those very important discussions about the core principles that produce a good nation, the tactical strategies that are absolutely necessary to restore America’s constitutional republic. I know that’s not a small goal. Listen, when I say restore America’s constitutional republic, we’re literally talking about saving the nation. So you know, listen, I get it. We’re at the precipice. We’re at that point where America is teetering between liberty and tyranny and you have a role in determining which way she’s going to fall. So you know, listen, I’m just going to tell you, the fate of the free world depends on you. No pressure or anything. No, actually I tend to put a lot of pressure on you every time you step into the tavern, because we have not just rights, but we have responsibilities and for too long we’ve left those responsibilities to someone else. We just assumed that somebody else will take care of it. You know, we’ve been busy enjoying the blessings of liberty, not necessarily bearing the burden that comes with that. So you may think I’m exaggerating when I say that the fate of the free world depends on you, but if you think about it for a second, I think you’ll agree with me. I think most people realize the fate of the free world, whether we like it or not, still depends on America, and I think, without question, America depends on a restoration of her constitutional principles, and a restoration of her constitutional principles depends upon the first three words of the constitution, we the people. So, very simply, the fate of the free world depends on America. America depends on the constitutional principles that America was built upon, and a restoration of those principles depends upon, we the people. Therefore folks, the fate of the free world depends on you. So I know that’s a big responsibility and I know we’re expecting a lot. But since the stakes are so high, we got to look back in history and say, okay, who else had these conversations? Who else went through this same discussion of how do you preserve liberty. Or, in the case of the founding fathers, how do you launch liberty? How do you begin to build a foundation, to build a society based on principles that will last and that will allow not only you to be free but your kids to be free? And so we’re essentially do exactly what the founding fathers did. You know, when you go back in history and you look at what the founders did, they had the good old fashioned intellectual discourse, exchanging ideas with each other. You know, the Bible calls it iron, sharpening iron. You know, you sharpen the countenance of your friends, you sharpen the countenance of your fellow patriots by having the discussions first, not just responding in emotion but having the intellectual discourse that will allow you to respond appropriately. And the founders did that in the taverns, they did it in the churches, in their own parlors, in their homes. They got together, they talked about these things. They had conversations about the laws of nature and nature’s God, about, you know, the rights of man, the role of government, the proper role of government and the responsibilities that we just mentioned, the responsibilities of a citizen. It was those conversations. That’s what ultimately led to independence, that’s what led to the war for independence, that’s what ultimately led to the foundation and the creation of a government that would become the most powerful, most free, the wealthiest and, yes, the most benevolent nation in the history of the world. And now we need to have those conversations so that we can hang on to it, so that we can restore it in many ways. You know we all often talk about the conversation between Ben Franklin and Miss Powel. You know, Powel had been having these conversations in the parlor of her home. She would have these founders over to her house where she lived, right down the street from Independence Hall, and they would talk about what works, what doesn’t work, what have they read, you know, from Locke and Montesquieu and in the Bible and all of these resources, and what have they seen in history that worked and didn’t work, and they would talk about the way to design this government. So it was. It was no surprise. In fact, there’s some that say that the conversation didn’t actually take place on the steps of Independence Hall when Franklin was leaving the Constitution Convention. Actually, the conversation took place in Miss Powel’s parlor. It was one of those discussions around the table. She was literally the first Constitution coach. You know, we have at Patriot Academy twenty-six thousand Constitution coaches now all over America hosting our Constitution classes and I call Miss Powel the first Constitution coach, because she had these people over and talked about these things and literally helped to create what would become the nation. Anyway, miss Powel asked Franklin when he was leaving the convention or in the parlor, wherever it actually happened, but she said what kind of government have you given us? Meaning, they weren’t sure what was gonna come out of that Constitution Convention. They weren’t sure if we were gonna end up with a republic or what type of government was going to be designed. And that’s when Franklin, of course, said a republic, if you can keep it. The famous words. Eric Metaxas has a great book on this where he talks about that. The government course, that that we designed at Patriot Academy for high school students is called A Republic If You Can Keep It. It’s an important phrase and we’re at the, if you can keep it, point. I mean we’re literally at that point in our history where we must decide are we going to do what it takes to keep the republic? Are we going to restore the republic? Now, I wish we could get together in person. I wish we were doing this in an actual tavern somewhere. Maybe we’ll have the opportunity to do that in some of the old colonies and go to some those old taverns and get together at some point. That would be pretty amazing. But we are going to replicate what took place in the 18th century at these taverns. We’re just going to do it with 21st century technology, so we’re going to use these fancy lights and cameras to create this and send it to you, streaming across the nation, into your phone or iPad or on your television or however it is that you’re going to watch this. But I do want you to imagine, just each week when we get together here in the tavern, that we were able to borrow Doc Brown’s DeLorean, that we were able to get that flux capacitor working and we were able to go back in time, and maybe that we are actually taking a trip to the 1770s and perhaps we’ve ended up back in one of those taverns that were frequented by the founding fathers. Now, I want to start our first episode just reminding you of some of those taverns. I was looking up a few of these places. I’ve been to several of them, not all of them and I look for to go into to more of them, but one of my favorites is this one right here, The Green Dragon Tavern. That’s the one in Boston. All right, folks, enough of that opening from the Tavern. You gotta watch it to get the rest of it. We’re gonna take a quick break. By the way, if you wanna check out the Tavern, then go to PatriotAcademy. tv I’m always saying PatriotAcademy. com on this program, but it’s PatriotAcademy. tv to get the Tavern or at Warrior Poets Society Network. All right, stay with us, folks, we’ll be right back on WallBuilders.
Tim Barton: 10:08
Hi friends, this is Tim Barton of WallBuilders. This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history, or even heroes of the faith, and I know oftentimes for parents we’re trying to find good content for our kids to read and if you remember, back to the Bible, to the book of Hebrews, it has the Faith Hall of Fame where they outlined the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that, as Americans, we really wanna go back and outline some of these heroes, not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity and our faith as well. I wanna let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called the Courageous Leaders Collection and this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright Brothers. And there’s a second collection called Heroes of History. In this collection you’ll read about people like Benjamin Franklin or Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman, friends the list goes on and on. This is a great collection for your young person to have and read. It’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at WallBuilders. com that’s www. WallBuilders. com .
Rick Green: 11:11
We’re back here on WallB uilders. Thanks for staying with us. Giving you a little taste of the show that we launched last night, called the Tavern, with America’s Constitution Coach. We had John Lovell on as a guest and Elias Coop- Gonzalez. Before the break, I was giving you a little teaser from the opening of the show. Give you a little taste of the interview with John Lovell right here. Alright, next up on the Tavern is the founder of Warrior Poets Society Network and, of course, author of the Warrior Poet Way, John Lovell. Hey man, thanks for helping me kick off the show on your network. Thrilled to. Welcome to it, man. Well, we hope to have a lot of great conversations here in the Tavern, just like the founding fathers did, you know, sitting around having a pint or two and talking about how to remake the world in a revolutionary, shall we say, way, and we seem to be sitting on the cusp of that in America right now. We need to remake the world, like it used to be, and bring back those declaration principles. So thanks for coming into the Tavern and just chatting a little bit about the issues of the day, the declaration principles and what you see as the responsibility that a Warrior Poet would take on if they’re gonna be a good citizen and there may be a lot of folks watching that think you know, why should I pay attention to politics? I just need to take care of my family. If I defend my family, my ground, my home, then I’m good. Why should they be thinking beyond that?
John Lovell: 12:24
Because tyrants have no restraint and they’ll never just let you live and let live. They’re not going to leave you alone. And you know the part of me it’s kind of like, hey, just leave me alone, let me do life, whether I crash and burn or wild success or something in between, just leave me alone. Tyrants who want power and control don’t think like you. They aren’t like you, and they’re coming for more power and more money, and the way they get it is at your expense, and so we have tried this for far too long, and you can really see it over the historical global scale of people that just really wanted to be left alone, and tyrannical governments never, ever do that. When are we going to get the message? When are we going to finally wake up and realize that you only keep freedom by fighting for it? And that means if you really want to keep freedom at home, you have to fight it out in the public square.
Rick Green: 13:17
Wait a minute, John. I mean, you almost sound like you know I understand the stuff you’re talking about a hundred years ago. Yet it’s almost like you think the government might even try to shut your business down or keep you from worshiping at whatever church or synagogue or whatever you go to on the weekend, or maybe they would require you, even when you’re healthy, to stay at home or wear a mask or something. I mean, I just think you’re over, you know. Do you think this kind of stuff would actually happen in our society today?
John Lovell: 13:41
Yeah, anybody that isn’t already on board who doesn’t recognize that just in the last couple years, our first amendment has just been eviscerated Like point by point. All of our natural freedoms have been just absolutely annihilated under the auspices of an emergency, right? They’re your rights unless there’s an emergency. And if I can’t convince you that freedom is under assault, there’s no amount of evidence I would be able to bring to convince you of the contrary. And so there are folks out there that are just head in the sand, desperately don’t want to believe that’s true, and so no amount of evidence right under their nose would be able to convince these people. But I think most of America, the folks that are watching, see the writing on the wall. They have the intellect and the courage to be able to call a spade a spade and be like. Freedom is dying. We are less free right now than we have ever been before. The government has never been even close to as big and as powerful as it is right now and this corrupt. We need to wake up, because all this is going toward a point of critical mass.
Rick Green: 14:47
It is. And man, that’s going to be a theme in this show, as we have these discussions at the tavern, is the fact that you look at the grievances in the declaration and they make you know, make it look like King George was, you know, 12 year old, little league baseball, compared to the major league violations of the laws of nature and nature’s God that our current government is doing. But you said something about you know, in an emergency, it’s almost like those rights don’t matter. I think one of my favorite memes during the chaos and the COVID crackdowns was the picture of the you know signing of the Constitution with George Washington or James Madison or one of the guys saying you know, none of this counts if there’s a virus. And that’s actually the way a lot of Americans acted because they just didn’t know their rights. And one of our themes on this show is going to be John Jay, first chief justice, who said you got to know your rights, you got to study the Constitution, so you know your rights, you’ll perceive when they’re violated and be the better prepared to defend and assert them. It’s almost like, John, he was saying you got to be tactically aware, civically right? And so you’re a master at being tactically aware, physically. You’ve been training guys on that for years. This is… you almost had a shift about a year ago. I remember watching one of your shows and there was just a shift in your mindset that you know, if we’re going to truly protect our families, we’ve got to get more involved. Stop, you know, perfuming it up. We’re going to tell it like it is, on the faith side of things, on the liberty side of things, and you really took a bold step forward into current events and I just wanted you to share a little bit of that here in the tavern. What caused you to make that major shift? Not that you weren’t teasing it a little bit, but I mean, you went head on about a year ago.
John Lovell: 16:19
Well, I didn’t step into a political arena. I held my line and politics stepped into my arena. That’s what happened. I was a snake that was poked multiple times and now I’m coiled. No step on snake, right? It’s a long American tradition, and politics, not being content to stay in its own purview, has invaded every single area of American culture and life and now has made strong reach toward the Bill of Rights to undercut and erode essential freedoms. I’m like that’s all you have left. Once that’s gone, america is literally dead. Once the Constitution has been rendered ineffectual, then America’s fallen. I wonder, in years to come, whether historians will look back now and already put the end date on the epitaph of American society. I don’t know. I don’t know how historians will do that. I just knew in Ancient Rome, Rome had fallen, according to historians, but people were still living in it for years, not realizing that Rome had kind of technically fallen. I think if you don’t have closed borders, you’re not a nation. If you don’t have election integrity, you’re not a nation. For us, if we don’t have a constitution, we’re not the nation that we were founded. We’ve morphed into some other crazy animal. And so, really, I didn’t get into politics, politics got into everything and so I had to speak up or just leave the field to the enemy. I was like, what am I going to do? Just sit back and collect a nice paycheck while making some fun, entertaining gun video? I would like to be able to serve people well and just be like, hey, I’ll do some gun stuff and better home defense and home protection. I don’t believe God gave me a platform to just steward it, for that part. I think I’ve been given a platform to steward for something more important than that, and so maybe if we can get back to some type of normalcy, maybe if government could be cut down to size, I could get back to just some good old glory, to having some fun on the range. But until then I’m going to fight for freedom and for the people to my left and right who I love.
Rick Green: 18:26
Well, and your kids? You’ve talked about that several times. This is literally to preserve it for them. And I used to ask people all the time I’d give a presentation, I’d talk about the founders, I’d talk about freedom in America and I’d say what’s your freedom worth? And mixed response. I finally figured out the right question is what’s your child’s freedom, what’s your grandchild’s freedom worth? It changes your whole perspective and saying I may not even live to see the complete restoration of the Bill of Rights and our due process and all those things, but I’m planting trees under which they can enjoy the shade, even if I don’t get to and preserve it for them. You mentioned how politics and government is stepping into everybody’s life. I mean, there’s just a recognition, I think, right now that the culture is crumbling around us, we’ve got a choice, we either curl up in the fetal position or pretend it’s not happening or whatever, or we pick up the pieces and rebuild. And we have to rebuild on truth, and that’s the part of the declaration I want to jump into with you a little bit. That second paragraph starts we hold these truths to be self-evident. I mean, this nation, these principles were built on a foundation and we’re about to hit the 250-year mark. In about two years and 300 days or so we’re going to hit the 250-year mark. Most nations, civilizations, great empires, all that fall apart at that point. We’ve got a chance over the next couple of years to come back to those truths and come back to that foundation. What does that mean to you, when Jefferson says we hold these truths to be self-evident? Ah, not so fast. You’ve got to get the answer to that by watching The Tavern. Okay, we’ve got to take a quick break. We’ll be right back, you’re listening to WallB uilders.
Tim Barton: 20:06
This is Tim Barton from Wall Builders with another moment from American history. In the early 1700s, the Reverend John Wise preached that all men were created equal, that taxation without representation was tyranny and that God’s preferred form of government was the consent of the governed. All of which is language recognizable in the Declaration of Independence. Why? Because in 1772, the Sons of Liberty, led by founders such as Sam Adams and John Hancock, reprinted and distributed the Reverend Wise’s sermons. So four years later, much of the Declaration reflected the language of those sermons by John Wise. In 1926, on the 150th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, president Cal McCoolidge affirmed, the thoughts in the Declaration can very largely be traced back to what John Wise was saying. Few today know that the Declaration was so strongly influenced by the Reverend John Wise. For more information on this and other stories, go to WallBuilders. com .
Rick Green: 21:02
Welcome back to Wall Builders, giving you a little taste today of our new show called The Tavern that you can get on Patriot Academy. tv , new Patriot U that we are launching, and then also you can get it on Warrior Poets Society Network. Towards the end of that first episode, and the episode is going to run about an hour, an hour and 10, it’s a beauty of not being on old school broadcasts. You can just go as long as you want the interview to go, not quite doing the Joe Rogan, you know, three hour thing, but it will be about an hour, a little more than that each of these shows. Well, towards the end of each show we’re going to do this thing called Profiles and Courage and we’ll highlight someone who’s been to a Wall Builders Legislators’ Conference or to Patriot Academy Leadership Congress or one of our other programs. And in this first episode that released last night, we did a little Profile and courage on Elias Coop-Gonzalez, that rep in West Virginia that I was telling you about earlier in the program. So let’s just jump right into Elias’s story.
Elias Coop-Gonzalez: 21:56
I’m Elias Coop-Gonzalez and this is my Patriot Academy story. I first went to Patriot Academy when I was 16. There I found other young people who aspire to be good, civically involved citizens. I learned how the legislative process works, the principles that promote the common good and the intrapersonal skills that make an effective leader. Then I went back again and again. I also went twice to Patriot Academy’s Constitutional Defense Course. I made friends with fellow patriots from my generation who were passionate about freedom. Many have become lifelong friends. I started helping conservatives get elected to office, from local candidates to members of Congress. Then, in 2022, I was asked to run against a liberal member of the West Virginia Legislature. Through God’s grace and providence, I beat my opponent by 21 points and became the youngest member of the West Virginia Legislature, and when I got in, I relied on my Patriot Academy training every single day. I enjoy serving the people of West Virginia, but I also enjoy helping raise up fellow constitutional conservatives by going back to Patriot Academy and mentoring students in my generation. I also work with Leadership Institute and Wall Builders to help candidates around my state and the nation. People have all kinds of excuses for not getting involved, not doing their part to save liberty. But I am living proof that, no matter your age or your background, every single one of us has a role to play in restoring America’s Constitution.
Rick Green: 23:34
Well, what a great story. Actually with us now is Representative Elias Coop-Gonzalez from West Virginia. Elias, hey bless you, brother. Thanks for spending some time with us today. Well, man, I, as you can imagine, very much enjoyed watching your success there in West Virginia and, of course, I love your Patriot Academy story as well. But our viewers at home, as they’re watching this, they got to be wondering okay, if this guy can serve in the Legislature at 21 and be involved as he is, certainly there’s something I can do. What do you say to people when they say, you know, world’s falling apart, what can I do to make a difference?
Elias Coop-Gonzalez: 24:08
Well, that’s an excellent question, because there’s all kinds of ways to get involved and for me it was just the campaign route, and I can give you a whole bunch of examples where you can get involved. One really big thing that’s really hot right now is school boards. Man, you see all these people, especially these radical leftists they get in there with just a handful of votes. It really wouldn’t be much to just go to your church and say, hey guys, you know we need to get involved, we need to make a difference, and then have every member of your church show up to school board meetings and vote and you can make a huge difference in your community. And you know, one of the things that I really appreciate about the founding fathers and de Tocqueville actually talked about this a little bit as well is that in America, a government really is supposed to be structured from the bottom up. You know, you want to start at that community level and you know one of the biggest reasons why is just because you all know each other, right? You don’t have some bureaucrat all the way down at the state capital or at the US capital making laws for you.
Rick Green: 25:01
I love that man because it’s also achievable, right? I mean, a lot of times we get frustrated about what’s going on in DC. It’s a long ways away and it’s big and of course you feel like, as you know, listen, I’m average Joe. How am I going to make a difference on who the president is or who a US senator is? But, like you said, local school board, man. I watch school board races in my state of Texas, sometimes decided by three, four votes out of a hundred, or 200 or 300 votes. I mean, it’s not like… in a lot of these school districts, it’s not thousands of votes, it’s hundreds of votes. And I think you’re absolutely right. And we’ve seen it happen. And we’ve seen our Constitution coaches run for school board. I’ve lost count at how many have gotten elected across the country. We’ve seen, like you said, a small church can just get active and get involved. We’ve seen them take over entire school boards. So it’s a fantastic, fantastic example. Let me come back to you for a second and just your experience there in the legislature in West Virginia. How were you received by your colleagues, being the youngest member? Well, like I said, folks, it’s just a tease. You don’t get the whole interview. You gotta watch The Tavern. So check out PatriotAcademy. tv or head over to Warrior Poets Society Network as well. We’ll give you you know, we’ll keep bringing you a little taste of some of these cool interviews. I got some great people coming up for that program and we’ll kind of we’ll kind of dual purpose it. We’ll bring some of those here on WallBuilders as well and just constantly be looking for ways to equip and inspire you to get out there and make a difference. So go, create your own profile and courage, have an impact on what’s going on in the world around you, especially in your family, but also in your community around you. Thanks so much for listening, today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders.