Young conservatives should emulate Andrew Breitbart and “walk toward the fire,” said Breitbart News Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow at the Turning Point USA Teen Student Action Summit in Washington, D.C., on Thursday.
Breitbart popularized an understanding of the way culture shapes politics. “Culture is upstream from politics,” said Marlow, “and [Andrew Breitbart] was the first guy talking about it.”
Marlow recalled Breitbart’s insight into cultural determinism in politics:
It wasn’t that the people in Washington are leading the culture, leading the media, leading the entertainment industry. It was, in fact, the exact opposite. The radical ideas would foment on our campuses, in our press, and in Hollywood, and then those ideas would be put into law by our congresspeople and eventually the president … and Andrew saw this from a mile away.
Marlow noted the continuity and commonalities between Occupy, Antifa, and other left-wing and Democrat-aligned movements and campaigns, including shared leadership, benefactors, and news media support.
Breitbart’s legacy included lessons for young conservatives on how to navigate the political battlespace, explained Marlow:
[Andrew Breitbart] walked towards the fire. He was a man of deep principle. He knew in his heart that accepting challenges — especially if it meant defending one’s values and principles publicly — was the only option. It’s difficult, and sometimes even impossible and even dangerous, but Andrew was the original new media warrior. And time and again, he took on the left head-on and literally walked into the fray.
Perseverance in the face of left-wing intimidation is a prerequisite for conservative political victory, determined Marlow:
When the left comes at you, this is your moment to be the strongest. This is your moment to double down. Don’t give an inch. Stand your ground. This is online and in real life. They don’t want to listen to you. They don’t want to be your friend. What they want to do is attack you and see you lose, so we need to embrace this. Andrew absorbed the hate and he let it inspire him, and I want it to motivate you to continue to fight.
And to the leftists who think they can censor young conservative students without consequence, I say this: Be careful what you wish for, because Breitbart will cover you.
Adversity is when resilience is most needed, stated Marlow, characterizing Breitbart as epitomizing perseverance:
The spirit of Andrew Breitbart, if you could sum it up in a phrase, is this: Walk toward the fire. That’s the challenge for you guys today. … When you’re under attack on campus or online, walk towards the fire. When people are calling you names, walk towards the fire. When professors or administrators threaten you or your beliefs — and when you feel like you have to give up, you’re going to give up, you’re going to give in — this is where you walk towards the fire.
Marlow concluded, “You stand strong. You be bold. You summon up that courage, and you fight fearlessly. We have the best ideas and we have numbers. Always, folks, walk towards the fire.”
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