Flush your preconceived notions about Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor Rally

Ten points that don’t fit the narrative.

Journalists work hard, but the “media” is lazy. Coverage teams in the media draft history before it happens, and report events against a preconceived narrative. I understand this perfectly: As a writer, I draft an outline of how events should unfold in my fiction, so that conflicts emerge where they should to present a self-consistent story with a climax.

Here’s what I didn’t expect before watching Glenn Beck’s rally:

1. Diverse crowd – people from near and far who can’t be pigeonholed as just Tea Party, or dittoheads, or marching-in-step Republicans/
2. Friendly people – everyone I met spoke openly and politely. None of these conversations took a political turn. (My prompting question was “so what do you think you’ll remember from this rally?”)
3. Obama never mentioned – according to Politico, not once in 3.5 hours. Fits the civility.
4. More God, less Party – the Republican party stayed away. Obama and Democrats were not the target of the typical vitriol of Glenn Beck’s regular gig. (But in line with the media’s portrayal, focus was #1 Patriotic, #2 God, and #3 Money from my observations).
5. Vets honored more than they’re supported – The fundraiser for Special Operations Warrior Foundation (Glenn Beck’s Org) raised $5.5M, but this money will only go to support vets AFTER the rally itself is paid for. Glenn Beck and co. will pay none of the costs. This is legal and common, but I suspect that a lot less money would have been raised if they were upfront about what the money was being raised for.
6. Local’s not paying attention – Some of my frisbee buddies on the mall shouted sarcastic taunts at the pro-Freedom lot, without listening or thinking that this group wasn’t like the people who counter-protested the anti-war protests I organized in 2003 in DC. I am speaking from experience when I say these folks were fair, friendly, and worth listening to – even if I don’t plan to ever listen to Glenn Beck himself.

3 thoughts on “Flush your preconceived notions about Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor Rally

  1. Very honest reporting. The only thing I would disagree on are your comments on the fundraising for the cost of the rally. Glenn has been upfront from the very beginning that he was fundraising to cover the cost of the rally and that any and all contibutions above and beyond would go the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. He worked hard to raise more money long after the cost of the rally was covered.

  2. There are but two serious conversations to be had in America. One is Social and one is Spiritual. One is the way to a civilized community and one is the way to heaven. I have to take objection to Glenn Beck on one account. He says that what he is doing is NOT POLITICAL but when he says that “this it is the third great awakening” then he is contradicting himself. He says that the first great awakening started the American Revolution – Political. The next Awakening (he says) started the Civil War – Political. He wants’ to take the country back from the direction that it is headed?? That has to be done within the Political arena otherwise we must unit church and state. The Spiritual conversation divides people, that is its nature. To draw lines that are nonnegotiable as to how we are to live in order to please our God, achieve our spiritual goal or go to Heaven. These Spiritual debates are a matter of faith and belief that divide everyone that disagrees. To say that people of all faiths can come together in unity (non-political) has to ask but one question, “who is your God?” For there are many gods for many people and they do not agree. Politically, in this country, we have freedom of religion, not unto salvation but for the purpose of a free and peaceful society. And as such we must legislate the morality of the citizen’s actions if we are to succeed as a peaceful people. What Glenn Beck is doing “Politically” is commendable for we are a nation of diversity that can live together with our differences but for him to say it is not is misleading.

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