Glenn Beck stepped into the Vault Tuesday night with his children, Rafe and Mary Kate, and Tim Barton to investigate the disappearance of Americans' ability to handle firearms over the past century. They started with Teddy Roosevelt's response to a Pennsylvania schoolboy's letter in which he encouraged the young American to learn to use a gun in case he was called to serve in our armed forces.
They then examined a photo of John Clem, who ran away from home in 1861 at the age of 9 to join the Union Army and went on to become the youngest non-commissioned officer in Army history. To demonstrate Clem's remarkable accomplishments, Glenn asked Rafe, who is currently about Clem's age when he enlisted, to aim a recreation Civil War musket. The difficulty of this task for such a young boy highlighted how exceptional it was for Clem to shoot a Confederate colonel at the Battle of Chickamauga, earning him a promotion to sergeant at the age of 12.
"Don't you feel like your whole life has been wasted?" Glenn asked Rafe jokingly after hearing about Clem's exploits.
"No, not really," Rafe replied flatly, eliciting a laugh from Glenn and the gang.