In the 1995 movie “Braveheart,” the battle of Falkirk is remembered as the heartbreaking defeat of William Wallace when the freedom fighter realized the treachery of the Scottish establishment. It was indeed a loss for Scotland, but it was also the beginning of the end of King Edward’s ambitions in the nation. Wallace lost the battle — with many casualties — but ignited the spark of freedom that ultimately won the war.
For the past few decades, conservatives have felt like we’ve been losing the battle. From Hollywood to academia, from corporations to government, from special interest groups to the mainstream media, a growing and strident anti-Christian, anti-American sentiment has long dominated the most powerful institutions in America.
Today, we have an opportunity to embolden a new generation of patriots to fight back with resilience, and like Wallace, hold up the banner for freedom and advance rather than retreat.
Bemoaning the rise of leftism is no longer enough, and turning the other cheek in our personal relationships with our neighbors as Jesus taught while abdicating our responsibilities on the cultural battlefield is no longer sufficient. There is too much at stake in the battle for the soul of our nation. Bold, unapologetic action and initiative is needed, which is why together we just launched the Falkirk Center, a think tank dedicated to restoring and defending American ideals and Judeo-Christian values in all aspects of life.
The two of us grew up in different generations with vastly different perspectives, but our goal is the same and our vision is clear. The principles of the Falkirk Center transcend generational divides and withstand cultural trends, as we believe they are rooted in compelling, enduring, absolute truths. As the creeds of secularism are proving fragile and unsatisfying to millions of Americans, there has never been a better time to fill this void and amplify these truths.
Earlier this year, a WSJ/NBC poll made national headlines after revealing a drastic 20-point drop in the number of young Americans today versus two decades ago who name patriotism and religion as important values. It came as no surprise to those who have been paying attention to the rampant anti-American, secular sentiment that has plagued our society, starting in our institutions of learning. In recent months alone, an elementary school banned the phrase “God bless America” and a university listed “America” and “American” as offensive words “to avoid.” Even more alarming, the overwhelming majority of America’s elite universities no longer require history majors to take a single course in American history. Students often say they chose Liberty University over public universities because of mandatory speech codes at the publics.
Upcoming generations are falling victim to the teachings of secularism primarily because they’re not learning America’s exceptional ideals. Further, attacks on religious freedom have caused them to abandon their Christian roots in droves.
It’s no coincidence that as young people’s acceptance of traditional values declines, depression and anxiety is reaching record highs. They are hungry for fulfillment and truth like never before, and right now, the only option for them is the siren-song of secularism promoted by the far-left.
Today we have a tremendous opportunity to provide our youth and other Americans an alternative to the left’s unfulfilling and outright dishonest attempt to provide a purposeful life. We also have an opportunity to provide clarity to a passionate, yet confused generation of believers.
Accomplishing this requires more than adding noise to the echo chamber. It requires an army of bold ambassadors equipped with Judeo-Christian and Constitutional knowledge to speak truth to believers and unbelievers alike in every professional field and public forum. This includes Christian leaders and influencers of all ages and backgrounds defending, explaining, and sharing their beliefs on all platforms and sectors of society. That is the function and the moral mission of the Falkirk Center. We will go on offense in the name of Judeo-Christian principles and in the name of exceptional, God-given American liberties.
Thankfully, we don’t have to render ourselves powerless as the left misguides our youth. Much like Wallace’s struggle for freedom, we need brave, tenacious, passionate fighters to prevail in our war to save the greatest nation on Earth. The Falkirk Center will be on the frontlines of this war, and we believe, like the passionate freedom fighters that courageously charged into the breach before us, we will eventually see victory.
Jerry Falwell, Jr. is the president of Liberty University and co-founder of the Falkirk Center.
Charlie Kirk is the founder and executive director of Turning Point USA, an advocacy group for young conservatives, and co-founder of the Falkirk Center.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.