What if Glenn Beck threw a Washington, D.C., party and no one paid attention?
It's nice to ponder such an outcome for the conservative talker's planned rally at the Lincoln Memorial this weekend.
Like a tree that falls in the forest but does so in silence, because no one is around to hear it, people opposed to Beck's brand of conservative twaddle should let him do his thing. Let him get one day of media coverage and be done with it.
But will we progressives do that? Not a chance.
We are going to protest. We are going to hold competing rallies. We are going to do every television news interview we can to display our anger that Beck is going to rally on the 47th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.
Beck's ridiculously named Restoring Honor rally (where exactly did honor go?) is billed as a salute to the military. That's cool, but we all know Beck will slip into his overwrought patriot act and spew some of the anti-progressive rhetoric he uses on his television show.
But before we start making our anti-Beck picket signs, here are few things to consider:
1) Neither we nor Martin Luther King Jr. own the Lincoln Memorial. Freedom of speech in this country means that we can't stop someone from saying something we don't like.
2) There is nothing magical about the 47th anniversary of King's speech. Yes, Beck might have picked the day to be a little insensitive. And it worked. But jumping up and down about it just empowers him and makes us look small.
3) All this complaining about Beck isn't going to change his rhetoric or make him reposition his attitude. What it will do is increase his popularity among the Tea Party pinheads who follow him and increase the number of zeros at the end of his bloated paycheck.
I can understand why the NAACP or Al Sharpton are up-in-arms on this matter. They are activists, so it's in their interest to stir the pot and get us all riled up over Beck's dopey gathering.
But think about it for the rest of us.
Beck is on television every night. What is he going to say that he hasn't said before? And Sarah Palin is also scheduled to speak. Great. Let's focus the camera on her closely and see if she is still reading crib notes off her hands.
Let Beck hold his rally. He will likely draw a few thousand of his Tea Party supporters -- mostly old white guys in their tri-cornered hats from the Revolutionary War and their political viewpoints from the same era.
But if you really don't like Beck and the idea of his "restoring honor" rally, just ignore him.
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