Monday, June 28, 2010

Glenn Beck reaches new depths of delusion

Posted By on Mon, Jun 28, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Glenn Beck hasn’t exactly established himself as an icon of reason and clear thinking, but the Unbalanced One has now outdone himself, disappearing into a fantasy world in which up is down, light is dark, and Martin Luther Kin, Jr. is a conservative. Beck plans to hold a “Restoring Honor” Tea Party rally at the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, the anniversary of the great civil rights March On Washington at which King, standing before the Lincoln Memorial, delivered his historic “I Have A Dream Speech.” The former Morning Zoo jock has somehow convinced himself that he is a true heir to King’s legacy — hey, they both mentioned the word “freedom” a lot, so Beck’s being reasonable here, right? — and has even compared himself to King on occasion.

This is another situation where you don’t know whether to laugh or cry: laugh at historically deluded bozos like Beck, or cry about the fact that many angst-ridden Americans fall for his schtick.

Just to clarify historical facts — which, I know, neither Beck nor his sheep have the slightest respect for — King was a left-wing activist who based his politics on his spiritual beliefs and values. He was opposed, often violently and nearly always with malice, by conservatives of every stripe all across the United States. Late in his life (which ended when he was only 39), conservative politicians routinely accused King of being a communist; FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, America’s own cross-dressing commie buster, had King wiretapped; and King's criticism of the Vietnam War made him persona non grata in the Johnson White House (four years after standing next to LBJ at the signing of the 1964 Civil Rights Act). More than anything, King was the nation’s leading voice against bigotry of all sorts; today's conservatives’ hard-nosed, deportation-happy positions against illegal immigrants would have angered and appalled him, as well as their ongoing opposition to affirmative action.

For Beck to now promote his upcoming rally as somehow, some way, in any way, being inspired by King and the 1963 March on Washington is so ludicrous, so nuts, so utterly divorced from historical reality, so Alice Through the Looking Glass, upside-down, Bizarro World, all this writer can do is wonder whether Beck is crazy, cynical, unable to properly process basic facts, hopelessly ignorant (as many of his historical “interpretations” suggest), or whether he just doesn’t give a rat's ass about the truth in his eternal quest for ratings and book sales. Whatever is wrong with Beck, it just seems to keep getting worse.

An interesting sidelight to the planned rally is how he’s screwing over the country’s wounded military to bankroll it. His website promoting the rally — which he refers to as a “non-political fundraiser” for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation (SOWF)  — reveals that "All contributions made to the SOWF will first be applied to the costs of the Restoring Honor Rally ... All contributions in excess of these costs will then be retained by the SOWF.”  It doesn’t take a genius to see that Beck is piggybacking on a legitimate charity and using it to pay for his own, self-aggrandizing rally. And yeah, I’m sure a Glenn Beck rally will be “non-political.”

For a look at how other conservatives have tried to hijack King’s legacy, read here.

Glenn Beck
  • Glenn Beck

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.-- Know the difference
  • Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.-- Know the difference

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