Last August, in Washington DC, I hosted hundreds of thousands of people that many in the media tell us are the most dangerous in our society. Transportation was overwhelmed, lines were long, temperatures were hot, space was crowded, and I was long winded. Throughout, a far smaller amount of protesters circled the crowd with signs accusing the audience of the most horrific insults imaginable. Yet, there was no documented violence, no documented arrests, and almost no documented trash left on the ground afterwards.
The fact that a vast majority of our society is miraculously civil might not make for exciting headlines, but it's absolutely true. I think that if you asked Adams or Jefferson to compare the discourse of today to the campaign of 1800, they'd be amazed at how civil we are. The trick is to take seriously those who do call for violence, while not trampling the rights of those who don't. While we must always stand up to protect those rights, we should also realize that only a civil society could maintain this balance as well as this nation has for over 200 years.
To do my part to further and honor that historic balance, I have challenged the media and those in politics to take a firm stance against those advocating riots and violence. I hope they will join me. Either way, the truth is clear: God has truly blessed this extraordinarily civil republic.
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