10th Annual William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence: Charlie Daniels

September 23rd, 2016 11:03 AM

At Thursday’s 2016 Media Research Center Gala, President Brent Bozell presented the tenth annual “William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence” to 2016 honoree Charlie Daniels. After celebrating the music career of the legendary country star, Bozell explained: “A few years ago I began reading Charlie’s columns....They were striking for their intellect, their passion, their beauty – reflecting both a fervent mind and a bursting heart.”

An outspoken patriot, beloved mentor to young artists and still a road warrior at age 79, Daniels has parlayed his passion for music into a multi-platinum career and a platform to support the military, underprivileged children and others in need. He’s always been a staunch supporter of the military, and for the past several years has headlined a special concert at David Lipscomb University benefiting the Yellow Ribbon Program which provides scholarships for veterans. He is also an avid writer, committed to conservative principles and telling the truth. He has been penning weekly columns for the MRC’s CNSNews.com website for several years.

In accepting the award Thursday night, Daniels delivered a passionate and poignant address to crowd in attendance. He began by describing life in his hometown of Wilmington, North Carolina in the midst of World War II: “American ships leaving the port of Wilmington were attacked and sunk by German u-boats just off our shores....The enemy was close and we had air raid drills and blackouts in anticipation of the day when the Germans were able to bring the war on shore.” He declared: “I learned very early in my life that only two things protect America – that’s the grace of almighty God and the United States military.”

With that anecdote setting the tone of the speech, Daniels proclaimed: “Patriotism was a natural emotion and we wore our feelings for our nation on our sleeves as we said the word ‘America’ with something akin to reverence. America the beautiful, America the bountiful, land of the free, home of the brave....catchwords, phrases, colloquialisms, a whole unique lexicon describing how we feel about the nation.”

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He continued: “A nation founded on the proposition that all men were created equal, born free with the right to the pursuit of happiness and the liberty to follow their dreams...as far as their initiative, determination, and sweat would take them. It’s a wonderful way to think about this land that’s brought prosperity and freedom to so many.”

While he acknowledged these as “nice thoughts, true thoughts,” he asked: “What in the hell happened to our country?” He noted that blame is often focused on politicians, but warned: “A nation’s greatness is not reckoned by the caliber of its politicians, but conversely, the greatness of its politicians is reckoned by the caliber of its people. Politicians are a reflection of the people who put them in office.”

He worried that “A recent poll discover that 44% of the population of this country take pride in being Americans.” Daniels posed: “What’s led us to this sorry state of affairs? How can people who have been so blessed just to be born and have citizenship in this nation possibly not feel pride in the fact?”

He identified some of the causes: “revisionist history....the idea that there must exist a monolithic central government that gives handouts from cradle to grave so you don’t have to be responsible for your own actions and well being, our constant and foolish move away from the Creator who blessed this nation and enabled it to achieve its lofty position in the world.”

Daniels implored that 44% of the country to “take another look, not at the politicians and the propaganda machines many of our media have become, but a long, hard look at the goodness and the beauty of a nation that has existed and prospered for over two centuries.” He then offered a loving monologue on the greatest of America.

Watch the video for the full speech.

Following Daniels being honored with the Buckley Award, the MRC presented its annual Dishonors Awards for the worst media bias quotes of the year. Former MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry beat out her liberal colleagues for Quote of the Year with a bizarre claim that the phrase “hard worker” was somehow racist.   

The always angry Chris Matthews won the “Damn Those Conservatives to Hell Award.” For more on that, go here. 

MSNBC’s Joy Reid earned the “Hail Hillary Award” for insisting that, maybe, the Founding Fathers could live up to the Democrat’s greatness. Click here for more. 

In a well deserved moved, Bill Maher was deemed the “Celebrity Dumbass” of 2016. Go here for more. 

Tell the Truth 2016