We’ve gone through moments in our history before when we acted out of fear, and we came to regret it. We’ve seen our government mistreat our fellow citizens, and it has been a shameful part of our history.
This is a country founded on basic freedoms, including freedom of religion. We don’t have religious tests here. Our founders, our Constitution, our Bill of Rights, are clear about that.
And if we ever abandon those values, we would not only make it a lot easier to radicalize people here and around the world, but we would have betrayed the very things we are trying to protect.
The pluralism and the openness, our rule of law, our civil liberties, the very things that make this country great. The very things that make us exceptional. And then the terrorists would have won, and we cannot let that happen. I will not let that happen.
You know, two weeks ago I was at the commencement ceremony of the Air Force Academy, and it could not have been more inspiring to see these young people stepping up dedicated to serve and protect this country.
And part of what was inspiring was the incredible diversity of these cadets. We saw cadets who are straight applauding classmates who were openly gay.
We saw cadets born here in America applauding classmates who are immigrants and love this country so much they decided they wanted to be part of our armed forces.
We saw cadets and families of all religions applaud cadets who are proud, patriotic Muslim Americans serving their country in uniform ready to lay their lives on the line to protect you and to protect me.
We saw male cadets applauding for female classmates who can now serve in combat positions. That’s the American military. That’s America. One team. One nation.
Those are the values that ISIL is trying to destroy, and we shouldn’t help them do it. Our diversity and our respect for one another, our drawing on the talents of everybody in this country, our making sure that we are treating everybody fairly, that we’re not judging people on the basis of what faith they are or what race they are or what ethnicity they are or what their sexual orientation is.
That’s what makes this country great. That’s the spirit we see in Orlando. That’s the unity and resolve that will allow us to defeat ISIL. That’s what will preserve our values and our ideals that define us as Americans. That’s how we’re going to defend this nation, and that’s how we’re going to defend our way of life. Thank you very much.
I can see why people hate him, and call him a tyrant.