Winning essays in the Savage scholarship contest

Jul 8, 2015 by

Michael Savage

Alex Peterson, James Lutack, Heather Fisher, Curtis Butterfield and Mark Bragg are the winners of the Savage Paul Revere Society’s “What does it mean to be an American?” essay contest. The college students will each receive a $20,000 scholarship over a two-year period.

Here are their essays:

Alex Peterson

“Obscured Resilience”

When peering through the drab filter of society that is fostered by the media and those who hold positions of power, we are made to feel inferior and helpless, at the whim of a higher dominion. This feeling of inferiority is created by harbingers of hatred in America as a way of diminishing dreams while constantly infecting minds with their pessimism. In a volatile time when confidence appears to have eroded, there remains a glimmer of hope behind this shroud of hopelessness.

Within the past fifty years, our country has appeared to change for the worse. Many impediments to the average American have burgeoned out of the fabrics of equality and acceptance. True Americans have been evicted from places of power and relocated to the back of the line because of their patriotism and deep-rooted love for the country. It is by way of hard-working Americans that this nation subtly remains the greatest the world has seen. It is the views of these people that continue to be suppressed the most. Furthermore, it is without their patriotic views that the country would no longer be capable of existing the way it once did.

In a time of uncertainty, these true Americans arise. While it might not be apparent in the public eye, the patriotic American leads from the shadows. This is not a leadership that we see in the mainstream. It is a leadership that exists within communities which teaches the youth about hard work and perseverance through tough times, even when some obstacles seem impossible to overcome. This is the reality of what it means to be an American. With a sense of pride and determination, no divisive man, cult, or administration will be able to destroy the base on which this great country was founded.

As the attempt to degrade the American spirit has progressed, love for America is continuously made to look like an extremist belief. Constantly, there are critics who claim the American dream, and by extension the American spirit, is dead. The thirst for success becomes impossible for those who hold these truths. While these pseudo-Americans blame everyone but themselves, those who are self-reproachful consistently thrive. This country’s unparalleled privilege to achieve is no more absent today than it was generations ago. The only difference is the quality of the individual attempting to realize his goals.

While the prospect of hope appears to dwindle throughout the country, an invisible majority possesses irrefutable Americanism. They continue to instill the values of hard work and independence in their children who will someday continue to lead this nation down its path of greatness. Although these people remain unseen, they are the ones who empower America to remain the elite power in the world. It is only with the further rise of true Americans that this country will be able to seek greater prosperity. The responsibility for the future of this country not only relies on those who are cognizant of the impending risks of decline, but on those of whom strive to reverse the degradation that has already occurred. The willingness to accept this task to prevail as a nation is what separates genuine Americans from those who are American in name only.


James Lutack


It is the morning of April 29th, 1945. The men of the 42nd division of the United States 7th Infantry approach a strip of railroad outside of a large industrial complex. The spring breeze fills their lungs as they press on towards their destination. Suddenly, the sweet breeze is no longer fresh but turns into a familiar smell to these men who have made their homes on the battlefield. It is the smell of rotting flesh baking in the sun, and it pervades every thought of these men as they approach these forsaken boxcars sitting on the tracks.

The sound of shots ring out as the locks of the boxcar doors are shot off, and the door opens to reveal its cargo. A bloody hand reaches out of the door as it opens—no, not reaches, but instead limply falls out as the rest of the corpse follows it. The door of the boxcar is flung open the rest of the way to reveal what is inside. Nearly 70 bodies of men, women, and children are stuffed inside, their emaciated bodies shriveled around their skeletons and eyes sunken in their face. Nearly all of their hands are cut open and bloody from beating the sides of the boxcar that they were shoved into like cattle and forced to endure conditions that not even an animal should be subject to. The men of the 42nd turn their eyes from the horror in front of them to the industrial complex that is before them.

Thirty-two thousand pairs of eyes peer from behind electrified fences; thirty-two thousand souls that have awaited their liberation. One way into hell—the rail cars. One way out of hell—the smokestacks. But wait, the footsteps of soldiers approach the fence, this time to liberate, not to enslave. The soldiers approach, the anticipation grows, and the prisoners will no longer be silent. A deafening cheer arises from the prisoners as the men of the 42nd enter the camp. For the prisoners, this is the day that life was granted back to the dead, that freedom triumphed in the face of tyranny, and that a spark of hope was lit in a sea of despair.

As World War II drew to a close, the horrors of what the Nazi regime did to both their own and the Jewish people became apparent to the entire world. The human suffering that was brought about by one man’s dream to bring the world into a new age of a thousand years is what inspired the words that remind us all to be vigilant against evil men with that dream; these two words: “never again.” But why never again? What will stop the world from taking the wrong turn in history and plunge into a thousand years of darkness? There is only one thing that will prevent this future: When ordinary men confront evil by standing resolutely against it without any compromise.

Let’s take an honest look across the globe together. What country holds the torch for freedom that all others look to and try to imitate? What country makes its hobby destroying evil men with dreams of destruction? When people flee their country due to oppression and tyranny, where do they dream of going? Without any apology or shame, there should be no American who is afraid to say, “America is the last great hope of mankind, and without her the entire world is condemned to live out the dreams of evil men.”

That is what makes America great: the resolve to stand against evil. No polished phrasing can be used to lend power to this greatness. No man can take a picture of it and save it for future generations to enjoy. It either exists in its entirety or it is worthless and inconsistent in application. The dream of liberty is what inspires good men to stand up and fight for God, for family, and for country against men whose dreams disregard freedom and seek to destroy faith in God and the unity of a people.

As the meaning of America fades into the annals of history, it will take a new generation to rise up and fight the dreams of these individuals with the reality of liberty. A fire hot enough to burn back the fires of hell must arise in the hearts of this generation without any self-seeking, apathy, or disillusionment. It is with firm resolve and pride in this American greatness that I declare myself to be a part of this new generation that will lead by example and reignite the torch of American greatness so that every eye from every corner of the earth might be able to see the light of liberty shining from America again.

“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” -Edmund Burke

“We’ll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth, or we’ll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.” – Ronald Reagan, 40th President of the United States


Heather Fisher

“What it Means To be American”

“I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him.” Abraham Lincoln was a true American. To me, being American means honoring entirely our role in a society that is completely unrestricting of whatever our pursuit of happiness is. It is the belief in the fact that America is still the greatest economical, religious, social, freedom from persecution model the world has ever known, as well as a beacon around the world for those that need support who truly are willing to fight for and die for the same beliefs. True Americans hold a responsibility to ensure that younger generations understand what was sacrificed and accomplished in the beginning. There is a very clear reason why the generation of World War II era citizens are known as The Greatest Generation. They believed whole heartedly in the foundation of what made America special and were not afraid to fight against anything they did not feel was for the greater good of the nation. They are the toughest generation to ever live. Today, my generation of millennials is distracted by technology—more pointedly, social media—and that same pride in our country is losing meaning with my generation, which will inevitability have a trickledown effect on future generations. As a true American, I know what it takes to be a proud, humbled American with a vision of continuing American pride. With three family generations of military and my brother overseas fighting this war, I understand what we are fighting for and what it takes to protect this country. We are not fighting for land; we are fighting for freedom, and the ideas the United States of America was founded upon. We are a nation forgetting our roots and not appreciating where we came from and what was sacrificed. We need to stand together and treat our military brothers and sisters like the heroes they are and stand together again, whether we agree or not, for the greater good of this nation and to always have the ability for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. True Americans understand the system around them is bigger than themselves and they do not focus solely on what they have to gain. They are willing to stand up and fight to create movements instead of hiding behind a keyboard on social media. Past generations knew this concept well and gave us a chance at following whatever passions, religions, voice, education, and career we choose without any government telling us differently. That’s the American way. We’ve always been a country of doers and that needs to continue throughout our American bloodline if we want to stay the land of the free because of the brave. President Kennedy’s words resonate through the years: “In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course. Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” That is what it means to be an American. We must educate our youth, take pride in our nation, stand up for what we believe in, and most of all understand and honor all that has been sacrificed to make the United States of America the greatest country in the entire world.


Curtis Butterfield

“Evil Despises Competition”

The competitive nature that exists in the United States is a unique quality which has bred a country of winners. Competing is a basic instinct engraved into the fabric of our human DNA. Rather than attempting to suppress man’s natural desires like many civilizations before, the founding fathers of this great nation have harnessed this great motivating force and established a nation where fairness and excellence would prevail. The concept of competition has influenced the structure of our government, free-markets, and has long kept malicious power-grabbing individuals at bay. Evil has discovered the tremendous power and influence that exists in America and has coveted to make it her own.

While Evil seeks the elevated position of power and control, Competition offers a level playing field where pure ideas can be spawned and tested. While Evil fears Competition and finds no joy in it, Competition finds joy in the triumph of good over Evil. While Evil grasps for uncontested domination, Competition aspires for excellence. The competitive nature of Americans is a major obstacle to those who wish to control us. A competitive format of government gives voice to refined ideas which can compete to become law. Thus, when implemented correctly only laws are created which best serve the will of the people.

Evil cannot compete with Competition. Therefore, Evil has employed the use of deception and lies as tools of progress. As you may recall, in 2002 Saddam Hussein won 100% of the votes during the Iraqi presidential elections. These types of tactics demonstrate that Evil will even attempt to provide the illusion of competition. Evil has many faces and can be found throughout the corridors of our government, industry, and the institutes of academia. Evil has taken great strides in advancing its agenda. There have been many attempts to change the very definition of evil. Isaiah, an Old Testament Prophet, said, “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light and light for darkness (Isaiah 5:20).” Not only is it their wish to redefine evil as good, but they also wish to redefine competition as bad, the results of which have been a decrease in the quality of education and the “dumbing down” of America.

Competition is not evil, but in fact drives the individual to pursue excellence. The same effects can be found anywhere Competition is implemented—be it sport, business, education or politics. Competition not only requires boundaries and rules, but also self-regulates the limits of those boundaries based on the invested interests of individuals. Therefore, Competition is an ever changing element which self-adjusts with respect to fairness in the quest of excellence. Competition even honors those who have failed in their pursuits and finds just as much value in the process as they do in the results. Evil cannot replicate these outcomes because Evil leads by force whereas Competition is self-motivated.

To be competitive is to be American, and to be an American is to be competitive. The terms are complimentary; you cannot mention one without considering the other. These concepts are woven into the fabric of this great nation. If this competitive nature is removed from American government then America as we know it will cease to exist. If America does not exist then what will the world become? The picture is not a pleasant one; Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and other evil dictators will finally be uncontested. Evil will dominate our world. As Americans, we should fight to protect our way of life because once Evil takes its top prize, Competition will not be tolerated.


Mark Bragg

Being an American requires independence and an understanding of and respect for American core values. To be an American means to understand and embrace the foundation America was built upon, to participate in and protect its government, and to fight to endure any level of hardship to sustain the legacy of American freedom, opportunity, and sovereignty.

Just as the United States is independent as a sovereign nation, Americans maintain their own independence through hard work and responsibility. Hard work encompasses struggle, failure, and success. One cannot learn without failing, and success without struggle is not earned. An American understands these truths and thus, relies on himself to achieve success. An American lives by these principles and does not expect nor accept support that is contrary to American values. Anyone who expects America’s government to support them disregards our nation’s initial struggle for sovereignty and imperils our nation’s future.

Sovereignty is one accomplishment that was crucial in building this country into the great nation it is today. This can only be maintained with our nation’s borders. As a nation, we cannot just let anybody in, for there are people who reject our values. These people are in effect destroyers of our nation. We must defend our country from those whose values are contrary to ours. Just as a home must have strong walls and a locking door, our country should have strict borders to protect that which is most important to us—our culture.

American culture is as old as our nation’s sovereignty. Our founding fathers fought valiantly for independence, established a new country, and laid a just and harmonious foundation for a liberated way of life. Though initially the country was divided by the different cultures that comprised it, they soon united as one on the common ground of the Bill of Rights—a union based on mutual respect and individual liberty, which gave our country the foundational strength that led to the prosperity that we enjoy today. Our individual rights are what set us apart from many other countries. The culture of America stands to say that as individuals, each and every American would be respected, valued, and guaranteed the opportunity to attain success. From day one, America was the land of opportunity for all.

The principle tenets of American culture are bound together by language. English has been the main language of our country since the beginning. Without it, creating an understanding between all of the American states would have been impossible. Out of all the languages that were present in North America when this great nation began, English prevailed. Through the centuries, English has been the language spoken by the majority in America, and most foreigners attempted to learn English when they entered our land. Recently, our country has been relinquishing the value of a common language, implementing multiple languages into the workplace, schools, healthcare, and many other areas of American society. For example, all the sudden, Americans who speak English but not Spanish are losing jobs to Spanish speakers. Moreover, non-English speakers are demanding translators to accommodate their languages instead of being apologetic for not knowing the language of this country. As an extension, demand for bilingual people has increased and the American well-versed in English is denied opportunities simply because he/she cannot accommodate foreign languages in his/her own country. America has always been the land of opportunity, yet we are depriving our own American citizens of opportunity in this way. We Americans need to finally establish that English is our national language and finally declare in action that we will not be overrun by those that would degrade our history, trample our culture, exploit our citizens, and cripple our progeny by rejecting our language, assaulting our culture, and disrespecting our borders.

To be an American, a person must understand and live by American values, embrace American culture, and defend by whatever means necessary that which we hold dear as a united democratic republic: liberty and justice for all. True Americans love their country and understand that the United States Government was established to be run by the people and for the people. True Americans know their nation will dissolve if its borders, language, and culture are neglected. True Americans demand that their culture is respected, their borders are enforced, and that their national language is English. In my opinion, true Americans will defend by whatever means necessary the American way of life and cultural values and will never give up their freedom—otherwise, he or she belongs elsewhere.

Source: » Here are the winning essays in the Savage scholarship contest

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1 Comment

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    I read through some of the essays and find it upsetting that those essays mentioning WWII and and the holocaust in regard to America and It’s role “forgot” to mention how this great country refused to allow in Jews and grant visas during those years! My grandfather raised money and joined together with Agudas Yisrael of America to petition politicians on their behalf while his family was being slaughtered in vain. Not very American. I would have chosen my daughters essay as the winning one instead.

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