Liberty Challenges with Liberty Tree App
Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – “Let’s say hello to Sunday morning Sirius XM Patriot host Mike Slater, who’s on the Dude Maker Hotline with us. You’re calling today because we’re going to talk a little bit about a project that you’re working on and what I was just talking about, about people educating themselves and maybe becoming inspired. It’s a really cool app that you have called The Liberty Tree app.” Check out today’s transcript for the rest…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: Let’s say hello to Sunday morning Sirius XM Patriot host Mike Slater, who’s on the Dude Maker Hotline with us. Hello, Slater, what’s up?
Mike Slater: Mike, it’s so good to talk to you. Amen to everything you were just saying, amen.
Mike: Let’s have a session here. Do we have a reverend in the house?
Slater: I’m sure we could get Al Sharpton on the phone, right? He could probably figure that out.
Mike: You’re calling today because we’re going to talk a little bit about a project that you’re working on and what I was just talking about, about people educating themselves and maybe becoming inspired. It’s a really cool app that you have called The Liberty Tree app. What is that?
Slater: You just mentioned that we need to decentralize and make everything local, local, local, and I 100 percent agree. I want to add one more thing in there, connect. We need to connect with each other. That’s what this app, which is available to download right now called Liberty Tree, totally free in the app store for your iPhone, iPad, and Android. Just search for Liberty Tree and you can download it for free. That’s what this app is all about. Let me give you the 60-second version, and then I want to get to your part of this, which is fantastic and blowing up and everyone loves it so far.
You know this, but back in 1765, the British passed the Stamp Act. Colonists didn’t like it, so they met underneath a giant elm tree on the corner of Essex and Washington in Boston. They called themselves the Sons of Liberty. That intro you had at the top of the hour still gives me goose bumps. Those people, those men are the Sons of Liberty. They met underneath the Liberty Tree. I don’t know about you, Mike, but I think we’re in need of a 21st century Liberty Tree, a place where we can discuss freedom and liberty and spark another revolution or a restoration of republican government. That’s what we’re doing here with this app.
Mike: Amen, amen, and amen. It’s fascinating that you mentioned this. I don’t know if you follow Brad Birzer on Twitter or Facebook or read his columns, but last week he actually wrote about that. He had a piece at Imaginative Conservative that was exactly about famous trees that republicans and patriots had met under and proposed acts of freedom, articles of association, and what have you. He mentioned your tree that Sam Adams and the Sons of Liberty met under. There were a couple other trees I was unaware people had met under. Apparently the tree is, number one, a sign of life, because they’re big and bold and vibrant. Number two, according to Birzer — this is why I love Brad Birzer — the tree is what, Michael? It stands. It’s traditional. It’s always there. It’s a rock. You can depend on it. It may waver a little bit, but it usually goes back to the place where it was before. The tree is reliable, solid, a good foundation. When the Sons of Liberty wanted to go back to being under it, it was still there.
I was thinking about this the other day when we were talking about posting the video at Liberty Tree and when I was reading Brad Birzer’s post about the famous trees, folks, if you weren’t paying attention, we lost one on Monday, the Eisenhower Tree at Augusta National. They had to chop it down because an ice storm killed it. That’s just an example, you wouldn’t think a tree could become famous, but there’s that famous tree. Mike, there’s a tree at Auburn University, I think, that Auburn fans used to meet under before the Iron Bowl. I think it was an oak tree that got taken over by Formosan termites or something and they had to cut it down. In any event, the tree was there for a long time. What Mike’s talking about is something that I think people don’t consider and wouldn’t tie the two together. The tree, as I said, provides us shelter — the liberty guys met under it so they could meet in the shade. In 1774, in Washington’s backyard, the guys that wrote the Fairfax Resolves, Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and George Mason, met under a grove of locust trees because it was in the middle of July. The tree is important and that’s why we have the Liberty Tree app.
Slater: That’s so good. My favorite thing about the Liberty Tree in Boston is the British soldiers chopped it down and turned it into the Liberty Stump. The local paper wrote “With malice diabolical, they [British soldiers] chopped down a tree, because it bore the name liberty.” I love that because it wasn’t the tree that had magic powers, it was the people who met underneath the tree. Everyone listening right now across the country, we need to meet underneath a tree. That’s the power of Sirius XM and your show. We’re all across the country. How can we do that? On your phone that you have right next to you, you can meet underneath a 21st century Liberty Tree. Hopefully this tree is right up there in the annals of history like all those other trees you just mentioned.
Mike: Here’s another cool thing about the Liberty Tree app. I guess it’s going to be once a week you’re going to have a different challenge?
Slater: Yeah, this is my favorite part. There are four sections: News, Forum, Group, but this is the best part. Maybe you’ll agree with me. I think we don’t just need a political revolution in this country. I think we need a cultural revolution. We need a social shift in this country. Every week, we’re going to issue a new video challenge. This is where we’re going to transcend politics into life, into families, into real American values. Every week we’re going to issue a new one. You can accept the challenge and comment on it and share it and really spread the word through these weekly life challenges. You have issued this week’s challenge. It’s perfect. I love it. People love it. It’s so great. I just wanted to talk to you and ask you why you chose this challenge for Liberty Tree.
Mike: The challenge that I chose was to challenge men to become better gentlemen, better fathers, better brothers, better friends, better coworkers, better parishioners in their churches, better leaders, better everything, to work on your social and gentlemanly skills, because how we conduct our affairs can either make us statesmen or boors. One of the, I think, great historical works that you can read to find out how statesmen conducted their affairs and what they thought about gentleman-like behavior and manners is the Earl of Chesterfield’s Letters to His Son. I think there were 213 in total. They’re published in two volumes. You can get them at the Gutenberg Press free of charge.
In the Earl of Chesterfield’s letters, we find each letter starts with the same thing “Dear Boy.” By the way, the reason why the earl started the letters is because Dear Boy is a bastard. He’s born out of wedlock. The earl, being an earl, was not supposed to acknowledge him. Dear Boy’s mother died and the Earl of Chesterfield is saying: I have to do the gentlemanly, chivalrous thing. I must see to it that this child receives a proper education.
So he basically then had to admit: Yeah, he’s mine. He’s a bastard, but I’m going to see that he doesn’t make any more bastards. So he sent him off to school. He went to school in Paris, he went to school in Berlin, and he went to school in Italy. He went to three different schools to learn — at one he learned law, one religion, and one the arts. All along the way, this 13-year-old kid is receiving these letters from this father he never knew he had. Each one, as I said, starts off “Dear Boy.” Then Chesterfield instructs him: Okay, son, you’re going to go into a crowd of people that are going to be smarter and wealthier than you; here’s how you should conduct yourself as a gentleman.
They’re great lessons. They’re good letters to read to start with, but the lessons are great. You said make it a challenge. Even though I didn’t have any details, I chose to go the gentlemanly route because my thought was: Knowing Slater and knowing that liberty-loving, libertarian audience you have, there’s going to be an ample supply of challenges to do this libertarian thing and seize your liberty by doing this, but few challenges for people to do — as John Adams says, “Freedom is not the liberty to do as you want but the responsibility to do as you ought.” That was my thought: Let me give them a little different kind of liberty challenge.
Slater: It’s perfect. One thing I love about the letters is it’s so great to see that the principles from 260 years ago are the same today as they were then. The answers are right in front of us, whether it’s the Constitution, the Declaration or the Bible, they’re the same principles of success. That’s what these letters, which you introduced to me through the app, show. One of my favorite things — you can download the app for free. It’s called Liberty Tree for your iPhone, Android, and iPad. You can accept this challenge. We highlighted a few letters and we linked back to your website as well. People are accepting the challenge and saying: I’m bringing my teenage son into this. We’re going to read this together. We’re going to read this as a family. Isn’t that as good as it gets? That gives me goose bumps just thinking about people becoming more gentlemanly together with their sons.
End Mike Church Show Transcript