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Producers' Pick | Richard Dreyfuss: One Thought Scares Me...

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May 7, 2023 12:00 am

Producers' Pick | Richard Dreyfuss: One Thought Scares Me...

Brian Kilmeade Show / Brian Kilmeade

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May 7, 2023 12:00 am

Academy Award Winning Actor & author of One Thought Scares Me...: We Teach Our Children What We Wish Them to Know; We Don't Teach Our Children What We Don't Wish Them to Know

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This episode is brought to you by Dave. When you need money in a pinch, Dave can help. It's a banking app that can help you get up to $500 instantly. No interest, late fees, or credit check. Join the millions already using Dave to get financial relief and sign up for an extra cash account to get up to $500 instantly. Go to slash Spotify or download the Dave app now.

For terms and conditions, go to slash legal instant transfer fees applied, banking services provided by Evolve Bank and Trust member FDIC. Who is Joe Biden's Vice President? I have honestly no idea. Ooh, great question.

No idea. Tamara. I mean, what is it? Kamala Harris.

Go stay here. Can you name the three branches of government? The... Oh. Um... Republican, Democrat. And then I think moderate.

Legislative, judicial, and consecutive. So that is an example. We want to, we brought the microphones out and we asked people some basic things. You see it on some of the late night shows too. That was for Jesse Watershell. Just about how little people know about what's going on in the news today and certainly about history. Richard Dreyfuss with us now. Academy Award winning actor and author of one thought scares me. We teach our children what we wish them to know. We don't teach our children what we don't wish them to know. And Richard, great to see you in studio.

Thank you. And if you're watching Fox Nation, you recognize him from every film that was any good. So Richard, you were listening to that. And what did you just tell me? They were going to blame the kids and not really aim correctly because it's what they're taught and what they're not taught. And teachers are not the guilty party, but it's the policy makers who say don't teach that.

And school boards and you cannot blame teachers and then of course pay them like kitchen help. You have to really commit to an honest history. And when you do that, you have to live up to it. And that means every sin we've ever committed, and we have committed sins, every sin we've committed, every grand gesture we've committed, we have to have the same bragging rights of those as we have for telling the truth about our past.

So if you just move a little closer to the microphone, that would make Eric happy. So Richard, I'm reading your book and you talk about your concern. People don't understand how great this country is. We never said you're perfect, but you grew up, you personally love reading history, love reading about our past. It's fascinating.

There's no history quite like it. It doesn't mean we walk on water and that Jefferson was perfect and that Washington never made a mistake. But the world is a better place because America exists.

Yes. And you're concerned like I am that people might not realize that they live here. Well, you had one day I was watching Denise D'Souza on Mike Huckabee, and he was saying that he had written a book called America, What the World Would Be Like Without Us. And I got up, went to the bookstore, bought the book, came back home, read the book, and then went grumpy because in his book, he didn't answer his title.

He had named it, but he didn't get anywhere near answering. So they called me that day, Mike, and said, you want to come down and be on the show? And I said, yes. And I walked in and there was a D'Souza. And I said, what did you think? And I said, I'm very confused and frustrated because you had an incredibly provocative title.

And I want to see that world because I think that would be an incredible history class. What would the world be like without us? Wow. But you didn't. All you did was say how great we were. You didn't compare it. But yeah, I think if D'Souza, I think in a way he's saying, look at how we change the world by our existence, how many democracies had come from there, giving people a say in their government. But you see, they don't know that there was a change.

So that wasn't the thoughtful conclusion of their thinking. They didn't, he didn't compare it to anything. He just described how great we were. And if he had compared it to any country, whether it was England or Russia or China or whoever, that would have been of some value.

Gotcha. So what do you want to get across to our listeners right now? Well, a lot of things, but there was a revolution. And there's a revolution only when you turn the values of the entire world on their head. And that's what we did.

We turned the power of the sovereign, kicked the sovereign out and handed that power to all of the people. And that was not only not done, that was as revolutionary a move as you can possibly create. And we risked the nation on that idea that we could confidently educate our poorest and educate our most enslaved. And they would be smart enough to run the country or to create art or to create this or that. And they were out to create intellectual resource pools and know that the people swimming around in those pools were all going to be smart enough to be president or senator or something. And they weren't ever educated that well. And I would say they tried to and gave it a good shot for a long time. And then after World War Two, they said, I don't think it's good to risk our children on this anymore. And they threw it away. Who's they? Educators.

Educators and politicians. And you write in your book that after World War Two, it's our zenith. You know, we free the world. We beat the bad guys. We led the world and we rebuilt the places that we blew up.

That's right. With the Marshall Plan. And we didn't brag about it.

We did it. We did good things, not talked about them. And all over the world, people admired us for all the right reasons. And before you could blink, they had removed civics, the study of the Constitution, the study of the Bill of Rights, the birth tale of America. These things had always been taught. And now they didn't disappear.

They were turned over to social studies, which is one floor up and in the back of the building. And they were turned from actual events in our history to a gentle panorama as a description of our way of life. And I remember one politician came out recently and said, you know, America was never that great. You know, and maybe contrast to a president that said, America, make America great again. But what I always think is people think when you say a country is great, it's perfect. And you make clear in your first words in your book, you never said that. But I think what makes us great, these are my words, is that we try to be that we try to make it better.

We identify it when party identifies another party identifies and we try to make it better. Was slavery right? Absolutely not.

Do we do we fight a war to fix it? Yes. Jim Crow, terrible.

Absolutely. Did we is there black and white water fountains now in the south of people telling go to the back in the buses? No, we we owned up to it. Riots in the streets. It wasn't pleasant.

It wasn't pretty. But we fixed it. And we again are still this country that wants to be better and better. And you're concerned that we don't understand that we don't want the same things we used to want. And I hope to God we relearn that ambition and relearn that goal, because I have seen audiences acquire outrage on their faces when you describe what's happened. And they're outraged that their children are not getting what they should.

And I have seen those same parents have outrage disappear from their faces before they get to their car. And the commitment of making it work disappears. And what is that commitment? It's the commitment to the idea that Jefferson wrote that said that these people, we are the sovereign power in this country. We have the same power in collective as the monarch and the sovereign. Now, do we know that? Do we act on that?

Or some in some sick, alchemic way? When we vote and we're voting some guy in, he thinks he's been made our boss. And he's not only not our boss, but somehow we've got to get across to him. If you don't listen to your constituency, if you don't listen to us who put you there, we will rip you out of that office so fast you would not blink. Right.

And they are absolutely impervious to that because they know that we don't have the guts or the knowledge to do it. So also Richard Dreyfuss, our guest, you recognize the voice, of course, if you're not watching Fox Nation, you're not seeing them. We're privileged to have him here. He's also got the Dreyfuss Civics Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization launched in 08. It aims to revive the teaching of civics in American public education to empower future generations with the critical thinking skills they need to fulfill the vast potential of American citizenship.

It's up to all our responsibilities to do it. Now, amongst us, Richard, there's been some great presidents along the way that we didn't know were great at the time. Like, look at Harry Truman, name me a top five category when they land presidents, he's not great or near great along the way. Right. The guy's a farmer, you know, with everything of Andrew Jackson, the big plus is this guy is a self-made success story.

He was basically an orphan by 13. No other country does that happen. It wasn't the ruling class of Jefferson, Monroe and Washington and Madison. Then all of a sudden you get an outsider who's president because he campaigned and he went to the people.

Well, you can create a list. It starts with Thomas Jefferson and it ends somewhere in the 20th century. And it's the list of those presidents who happened to be in office when there was a crisis and every other branch of government was closed for the summer or closed, we've gone fishing. So that Thomas Jefferson had to create a navy to answer the Tripoli pirates and Lincoln had to do what he did in order to respond to the southern secession. So, and I think it's so important too, nobody would have predicted that Lincoln was going to amount to be this great leader. Right.

Only in this country does it happen. And when you talk about Thomas Jefferson, this guy didn't want to get a, he didn't want to get a platoon together to help fight, a militia together to help fight the war. But he ends up one saying, telling Adams, I need this navy and we're going to have to tell the whole world we're willing to fight for our freedom and had to send a message. An unlikely person, a great intellect. A guy who would have voted against that navy in a second and yet because he was president, he knew what he had to do.

Right. And I'll bring you to another one that I think you could appreciate and you brought up before the show, Sam Houston. Sam Houston is a guy that was not achieving much as a kid. His brothers are much more enterprising, joins the military, finds a mentor in Jackson, has some problems.

He drank too much for a while, had a problem with his marriage. Governor would just leave and with the American Indians. But then at the right person at the right time, when the war is about to start in the south, he's like, we're not going to do well. We should not get into this war. And they said, hey, if you don't vote for this war as governor, you're out. He's like, I quit.

So he left rather than fight for the south in the breakup of a country. That's character. Yes, that's character. And we don't even think to include that in our little list of checks and boxes. And what do we care about?

If we cared about character, we would not have had the last number of presidents. And I actually called Larry King one day and I normally don't do this, but I called Larry and I said, I want to be on your show. Now. And he said, OK. And I went down there and I said, I'm not a partisan.

And, you know, why don't you hold that story? We're going to take a short time out and come back. We have a few minutes on the other side. Richard Travis is here. His book is now out.

You've got to pick it up, especially if you're a parent. And it is one thought scares me. We'll talk more about it when we return. So when we left, Richard Travis, the Academy Award winning actor who has a passion for this country, whose book is now out called One Thought Scares Me, was about to say why he called up Larry King and said, I'm coming down. Now, by the way, it's good to be Richard driver. Somebody could call the number one talk show at the time and say, put me on. I had a separate reputation because I was a new celebrity and I love to talk politics. And I wasn't afraid of talking politics, and so I was always being asked to do that. And there's a story about me and Dick and and Rumsfeld that will curl your hair.

OK, but this one was that I called Larry and I said, I want to appear on your show now. And he said, OK. And I came down there and I said, I want you to understand important that this is not a political statement, that this is not about politics or political principle. This is about the man Trump. Who I am opposed to because he has no simple common decency. And what year is this?

2016, 2016. And I said, you have to ask yourself a question. If you're impressed by Donald Trump. Imagine him calling you. And saying that he's in love with your daughter. And he wants to marry her.

Right. Would you be willing to say yes to Donald Trump being your son in law? Not your president. Your son in law.

And I must say, I think America has has more than enough morality in its back story. To be able to stand up and say never. Right. So you did not vote for Trump. That's pretty obvious. Yeah. Yeah.

Yeah. Did you have you voted for a Republican? I have.

Yeah, I have. And I would. I got no problem with that.

As a matter of fact, I would say that had he not taken it. I would have called myself a compassionate conservative. And I come from the left.

And that's pretty much what George W. Bush ran on. Yeah. And I and I would have used that phrase, but he had used it first. And so I could not do that. But I'm against all of those phrases, all of those descriptions.

I'm against them all. They mislead. They misunderstand. They make things simple when they're not.

They create an impression of simplicity and understandability when it's in comprehensively complex. So one thing I get from you, you're a patriot. You feel fortunate to be born here and you're concerned that people don't appreciate it.

You're taking action. Well, without America. Yikes.

I mean, just imagine 1945 without the United States of America and or 2023. And I still think, yeah, we need we we we need at least a dry cleaning. We need a we need some humility. We got it. Listen, we'll talk more about this on one nation over the weekend. Richard, thanks so much for your time. Go out and pick up this book. One thought scares me.

Richard Dreyfus. Thank you. The Fearless and Proud podcast series looks at acts of bravery and strength by women. And in the first season, we'll look at women who played important roles in the Civil War. In Episode three, we'll be looking at two intriguing women of the war. First, Cuban born Loretta Janetta Valesquez, who was sent to the United States for an education by her well-to-do Spanish family. We then move on to the legendary Harriet Tubman. We'll discuss her time as a nurse, soldier and spy for the Union Army and talk about the Combe River Raid, a turning point in the war. Listen ad free on Fox News podcast via Apple podcast and prime members can listen to this show ad free on Amazon music. Listen to this show ad free on Fox News podcast plus on Apple podcast, Amazon music with your prime membership or subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-07 00:16:14 / 2023-05-07 00:23:35 / 7

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