By Kerrin Brinkman | April 6 2012 07:54

Southern Pines, North Carolina - Sarah Cox, an alumna of both the North Carolina State and National Youth Education Summits (YES), has been hard at work this year promoting the programs of the NRA within her community. Sarah has presented the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program to a local school and coordinated a Refuse To Be A Victim® seminar and Instructor Development Workshop to be held later this month. Earlier this year, Sarah spoke at both the Moore County and Pitt County North Carolina Friends of NRA banquets and shared her speech with NRAblog:

Y.E.S. alumna Sarah Cox.Southern Pines, North Carolina - The National Youth Education Summit (YES) was an experience that I will never forget. Not only was I able to enjoy fellowship with 45 like-minded peers, but I was also given the opportunity to tour and see behind the scenes of our wonderful history-filled capital, Washington D.C. Visiting monuments, touring the Capitol building, participating in drills at Quantico Marine Corps base, shooting in the range at NRA headquarters and attending a session of the Supreme Court were only a few of the events that constituted this wonderful week. As the week progressed, I began to question why YES was so focused on history. Why were we focusing so much time on the birth of our country and the founding of our nation? The majority of our time at YES was spent touring war monuments, looking at original documents such as the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, touring historical museums, and listening to speeches about our rich history and heritage at Hillsdale College's Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship.

Near the end of the week, I began to realize why America's history was so important to the NRA. I realized why we were not being tested on gun models or shooting skills and why this summit was not a "gun camp" but was really more of a history camp. I realized that the NRA is not only about firearms. The NRA is about protecting a means by which the people can protect their God-given rights. Thomas Jefferson once said, "The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."

The NRA is all about protecting our right to protect ourselves against tyranny in government. At this time in history, and from the beginning of America's history, this means of protecting our liberty comes in the shape of firearms.

At the 2009 NRA Annual Meeting in Charlotte, NC, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich in his speech said, "The right to bear arms is not in defense of hunting. It is not in defense of target practice. It is not in defense of collecting. The Second Amendment is in defense of freedom from the state." This is what the NRA is about and this is why the NRA spends so much money on scholarship programs such as the Youth Education Summit. American history is the fight for freedom and we have on our shoulders the responsibility to keep this history and legacy going for future generations. By immersing us in the rich history of our country and exposing us to the past patriots and present patriots who have kept freedom alive in this country, YES ignited in all 45 of us the passion to carry on the torch of this long fight for freedom.

Friends of the NRA banquets help fund programs like the Youth Education Summit. It is through your monetary support that both the State and National Summits are possible. Thank you for helping to advance the vital torch of freedom.

Great work, Sarah! Get more information on the Youth Education Summit here. To learn more about Friends of NRA or to find an event in your area, visit

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