GOP Kicks Off Convention Amid Upheaval at Home and Abroad

Speakers delivered forceful messages on security.

— -- Under the lights of a banner that read “Make America Safe Again,” Republicans kicked off their presidential nominating convention Monday with warnings about the future of the country under Democratic leadership.

As the country continues to grapple with terror and instability abroad and racial tensions in communities across the United States, Republicans painted a dark picture of a nation in need of strong, assertive leadership.

“Our country right now is in a very bad spot,” said actor Scott Baio. “You can feel it and you can see it everywhere.”

“I blame Hillary Clinton personally for the death of my son,” she said emotionally, causing many in the crowd to tear up.

Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who led the Defense Intelligence Agency under Obama, said Americans could expect "more of the same" under Clinton, who he called "reckless" for her handling of classified information on a private email server.

"Lock her up! That’s right," he said.

After police shootings in Minnesota and Louisiana, followed by violent attacks on law enforcement, several of Monday’s speakers promised that Donald Trump – who has increasingly described himself as the “law and order” candidate – would help protect police officers and make the country safer.

"We should practice aspirational and unifying politics," said Ryan, who will address the convention Tuesday night.