Today, conservative Fox News talk show host Glenn Beck is hosting a “Restoring Honor” rally at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, and it just happens to be at the same site, on the same day where Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. This event is dubbed as “non-political” by Glenn Beck and is being held to honor military service and others who uphold our nation’s founding principles of integrity, truth and honor. It is for conservatives who wish to “reclaim” the Civil Rights Movement. There will be a number of speakers at the rally including Sarah Palin and Dr. Alveda King, Dr. King’s niece.
Needless to say, civil rights leaders like Al Sharpton oppose this rally and plan to protest at today’s “Restoring Honor” rally. They believe it was no accident that Beck decided to hold this rally on the anniversary date of Martin Luther King, Jr. civil rights speech. Opponents to Glenn Beck’s rally claim that he will use it to tout our African American President Barack Obama, promote anti-government, and push for state’s rights, all the while claiming that had Martin Luther King, Jr. been here today he would be quite comfortable with the rally.
Al Sharpton says Beck’s beliefs go against what Dr. King believed. He says that Dr. King in contrast to what Beck believes appealed to federal government to ensure equality. He was not anti-government as are supporters of Glenn Beck. According to Sharpton, Glenn Beck and the Tea Party movement, which calls for state’s rights goes against King’s dream. In an interview Friday Sharpton stated “His speech says clearly that he (King) wanted to see a nation where the Federal government protects us from those and states that would not uphold civil rights.”
There are several notions about the true purpose of Becks “Restoring Honor” rally held on this significant day in African American History. Political strategists say it’s “to rally the troops ahead of what could be a pivotal election.” Others believe Beck is tapping in on the subtle growing sense among many that “whites” are becoming the new minority, which is a group that must “reclaim” their rights. Still others believe it’s just an effort on Beck’s part to grab ratings.
Whatever the underlying purpose of Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally is, as usual it is stirring controversy and sparking a debate among both conservatives and liberals. I believe that Beck has every right to hold the rally wherever he chooses and for whatever reason he wants, because after all we all have our “rights.” This is still America, isn’t it?
News.yahoo.com: Glenn Beck calls for thousands at DC rally – Yahoo! News
Thegrio.com: Sharpton: Beck rally goes against MLK’s vision
CSMonitor.com: Glenn Beck rally on Saturday: Whose honor is being restored? – CSMonitor.com
Thegrio.com: Glenn Beck continues crusade to co-opt Dr. King