I’m on I-26 West heading back to Charlotte, NC for the final speaking event of this week. I just left Charleston and a visit at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina. The words “Duty, Honor, Respect” are the motto of this fine institution, which develops our young men and women into the future of leaders of America.
I was met at Bond Hall by Sophomore Cadet James McManus of New Jersey. James is a solid square-jawed 6’2″ image of American discipline and strength – something you see all over the campus. He gave an incredible tour of the campus and articulated the history of the institution.
The big treat was sharing noon meal with the 2400-strong Corps of Cadets. After a meal of chicken patties, it was off to address the Citadel Republican Society, over 200 Cadets strong.
I was introduced by Cadet Brett Stockholm, yet another reflection of American character and discipline. I discussed foreign and national security policy and the parallels to my years in college and now. It was so exciting to be on a campus walking amongst the men and women who will be leaders of our great nation.
So often we see stories of drunken college debaunchery and disrespect to adults, but that’s not the case at El Cid. However I it wasn’t only at the Citadel I experienced a sense of dute, honor and respect, it’s simply Charleston’s character. I was led on a walking tour of Charleston by a lovely southern lady named Fran of Bulldog tours, and the preservation of its history is remarkable. When you consider the naval invasions the harbor of Charleston has seen it is astonishing – both the British and Union.
South Carolina has always taken a stand for liberty and Charleston was at the forefront. Our Revolutionary War history is deeply rooted in countless combat actions and battles in the Palmetto State. To see the final resting places of men who signed the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution provides a glimpse into the rich legacy left and passed on to subsequent generations of Charlestonians.
Once upon a time where black slaves were once sold, black entrepreneurs now sell their handicrafts. Being in Charleston I was reminded of the essence of southern hospitality, that genteel respectful manner that means people address each other with a soft Sir and Ma’am — doggone I miss that. But what I miss most, having spent several days in South Carolina this week, is the spirit of American patriots that runs deep in the veins of these people. They want their Constitutional Republic back and as their forebears did, they possess the sense of duty, honor, and respect to fight in order to secure the blessings of liberty and freedom for future generations. God bless the Palmetto State, I shall