It’s remarkable that one man with a microphone talking about God and American values could inspire such paranoia. Yet, many on the Left didn’t bother to listen to what Glenn Beck had to say on Saturday during his “Restoring Honor” rally in Washington, D.C., instead allowing their fear and loathing of the popular political commentator decide what his real message just had to be. Glenn Beck tried to stretch out a hand across the political divide and liberals smacked it aside.
There’s no doubt that Glenn Beck can say outrageous things at times or that he is often overtly theatrical when he delivers his message. Glenn Beck would be the first to admit it. He recently backtracked on his assertion that President Obama is a racist, for example. “I have a big fat mouth sometimes and I say things, and that’s not the way people should behave,” Beck was quoted as saying in a Fox News story. He added that he regrets saying a year ago that Obama has a “deep-seated hatred for white people” because it’s not accurate. Beck’s over-the-top style annoys liberals, most of whom can’t seem to come to grips with satire in any form, but his large and loyal audience enjoys the show. On Saturday, Beck abandoned any hint of theatrics, satire and hyperbole, using the rally to deliver a personal, heartfelt message.
He called upon everyone, liberals and conservatives alike, to love their political enemies and to look to God for guidance. His focus, like that of the rally itself, was on God, country and honor. He paid tribute to America’s everyday heroes, both in the military and in civilian life. He raised more than $5 million for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. For years, Glenn Beck has been working hard to help transform America and refocus the debate over our future among Americans. He has used every trick in the book in that effort, from blackboards to blubbering, from hyperbole to history lessons. On Saturday, America saw another side of Glenn Beck; a man as passionate about his cause as ever, but whose passion on this day was for reconciliation and redemption under the watchful eye of a merciful and just Creator.
Liberal icons have delivered the same kind of message in the past, including the President of the United States. Barack Obama was elected with the support of independent voters who believed Obama when he said that he would reach out to Republicans, unite the nation, and end partisan politics as usual in Washington. That hasn’t happened, but it’s clear that this ideal still deeply resonates in the American heart, more these days than ever. So, why shouldn’t liberals welcome Beck’s conciliatory words? Why shouldn’t they reach out to grasp his hand and join him in affirming the great things about America that everyone should value? Those are rhetorical questions of course. We know why liberals wouldn’t embrace even these simple, shared truths: because they fear and loathe the man who is delivering the message. Blinded by hatred, the Left turned the rally into something it wasn’t, but that they had decided beforehand it must be: a partisan political gathering with racist undertones.
Consider a column penned by Dana Milbank that ran in the Washington Post on Sunday. Ignoring everything that the rally was actually about and anything that Beck himself said during it, Milbank instead mocked Beck’s views on civil rights and accused Beck of being a racist:
I was reminded of Beck’s affection for deception as he hyped his march on Washington – an event scheduled for the same date (Aug. 28) and on the same spot (the Lincoln Memorial) as Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic march 47 years ago. Beck claimed it was pure coincidence, but then he made every effort to appropriate the mantle of the great civil rights leader.
Beck as the fulfillment of Dr. King’s dream? And you thought “War of the Worlds” was frightening.
And again, later in Milbank’s column:
Finally, Beck updated the meaning of the civil rights movement so that it is no longer about black people; it is about protecting anti-tax conservatives from liberals.
It’s worth noting that Beck’s allegedly “racist” rally in fact attracted a number of black supporters, including Martin Luther King’s niece Dr. Alveda King. She recounted that part of her uncle’s message that was focused on: “bringing everybody together, not dividing.” Such words stood in stark contrast to those uttered by the Reverend Al Sharpton who used his competing rally at Dunbar High School to mock and insult Beck and his followers.
George Soros’ Beck-obsessed minions at Media Matters for America worked overtime on Saturday to get their digs in early. Their take was “unique” to say the least, bearing no relation to anything that anyone who watched and listened saw or heard. Consider this bit of so-called Research from MMFA:
Much of Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” weekend – and the run-up to it – focused on one thing: Glenn Beck. Beck introduced a Beck-sanctioned clergy group that he claimed represented “180 million people,” repeatedly associated himself with Martin Luther King Jr., made outlandish claims about the impact of the events, and was praised as “one of America’s most trusted and honored citizens.”
And MMFA wonders why nobody outside of the fringe Left takes them seriously. There seems to be some kind of death-wish at work among liberals as the November election draws near. It’s clear that more and more Americans want Democrats to move toward the center and that failing to do so will be a disaster for the party in this election cycle. Yet, sneering, hateful paranoid liberals like Milbank and MMFA keep dragging the party back to the far Left. Glenn Beck’s rally represented an ideal opportunity for liberals to seem a little less extreme, but they can’t bring themselves to do it. Nobody expects them to join the Glenn Beck fan club, but would it really have been so hard to join him in affirming that God, country, and character matter? Apparently so, and their intransigence simply makes them look more petty, self-absorbed, and small-minded than ever.