UPDATE – 29 Aug 210 (10:15 PM)
Politico – By GLENN THRUSH
President Barack Obama dismissed a recent poll showing that a third of Americans don’t know he’s a Christian – and blamed an online campaign of misinformation by his conservative enemies for perpetuating the myth that he’s a Muslim.
Obama, speaking with NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams on Sunday afternoon, was equally dismissive of conservative talk show host Glenn Beck – saying he didn’t watch the Fox host’s Saturday rally in Washington but wasn’t surprised that Beck was able to “stir up” people during uncertain economic times.
Williams, sitting under a tent in a rain-soaked New Orleans, where the First Family commemorated the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, asked Obama why so many people were uncertain about something so fundamental as his faith.
“I can’t spend all of my time with my birth certificate plastered on my forehead,” quipped Obama, who took a deep breath to gather his thoughts when asked if the poll reflected his inability to communicate with voters.
“The facts are the facts. We went through some of this during the campaign — there is a mechanism, a network of misinformation that in a new media era can get churned out there constantly,” said a visibly annoyed Obama, referring to “birthers,” who have waged a guerrilla campaign questioning either the existence or the validity of his Hawaiian birth certificate.
“I will always put my money on the American people, and I’m not going to be worried too much about what rumors are floating around there.”
Click Politico Link For Video @ 10:25-14:00 FOR BIRTH CERTIFICATE & BECK COMMENTS
CBS News – Posted by Alex Sundby
An estimated 87,000 people attended a rally organized by talk-radio host and Fox News commentator Glenn Beck Saturday in Washington, according to a crowd estimate commissioned by CBS News.
The company AirPhotosLive.com based the attendance on aerial pictures it took over the rally, which stretched from in front of the Lincoln Memorial along the Reflecting Pool to the Washington Monument. Beck and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin spoke at the rally.
Beck, who predicted that at least 100,000 people would show up, opened his comments with a joke: “I have just gotten word from the media that there is over 1,000 people here today.”
AirPhotosLive.com gave its estimate a margin of error of 9,000, meaning between 78,000 and 96,000 people attended the rally. The photos used to make the estimate were taken at noon Saturday, which is when the company estimated was the rally’s high point.
Rally organizers had a permit for crowd of 300,000. Crowd estimates used to be provided by the National Park Service, but the agency stopped counting crowds in 1997 after being accused of underestimating the size of the Million Man March in 1995.
Real Clear Politics Video: CBS News To Black Woman At Beck Rally: “I’m Noticing That There Are Not A Lot Of Minorities Here”
Catholic Online – By Deacon Keith Fournier
On Saturday, August 28, 2010, a massive crowd of people gathered in Washington, D.C. for a “Restoring Honor” Rally. The Rally was called by Glenn Beck, who has captured the heart of many Americans and raised the ire of some in the main stream media. The sheer numbers demonstrated that the rally had support well beyond the persistent efforts by some in the media to marginalize it. The crowd easily exceeded 500,000 people.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Catholic Online) – On Saturday, August 28, 2010, a crystal clear, sunny day in Washington D.C. a massive crowd of people gathered for a “Restoring Honor” Rally. The Rally was called by Glenn Beck, the popular radio and television personality who has captured the heart of many Americans and raised the ire of some in the main stream media.
The sheer numbers demonstrated that the rally had support well beyond the persistent efforts by some in the media to marginalize it as a “tea party” event. Of course, in their condescension these same people used that term in a disparaging manner. The crowd easily exceeded 500,000 people. The event stage was set up at the base of the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. However, the massive crowd stretched along the Lincoln Memorial, on both sides of the reflective pond stretching all the way to the Washington Monument.
An opening song, reflecting on the aftermath of the tragedy of 9/11, was written for the event and beautifully performed by a woman named Angelica Tucker. It set the theme: “We must rebuild our lives, our strength, and our hearts. not just the buildings we lost.” It was followed by an eloquent prayer by Evangelical Bishop Harry Jackson of Washington’s Hope Christian Church who is emerging as one of many men of courage, honor and character unafraid to speak and live the truth in our day.
The address given by Dr. Alveda King, the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, secured this heroic and inspiring woman’s place in American history. This is the 47th anniversary of her uncle, the late, great Christian minister and human rights hero, Dr Martin Luther Kings’ famous “I Have a Dream” Speech. He would have been proud of his niece. She is an heir of his legacy and certainly has his extraordinary gift for prophetic rhetoric which can rouse the heart of a Nation.
This was a masterful and inspired speech, given on the day when the Nation honors one of our greatest Americans. Dr Alveda King candidly and honestly declared that “our material gains seem to be going the way of our moral losses” but then insisted “We are Not without Hope!”. She referenced the iconic words of her uncle, adding “I Still Have a Dream”. She roused the crowd and called the Nation to unity through the restoration of the guiding principles which inspired her uncle’s heroic life and death and informed the American experiment.
The pundits who condescendingly sought to marginalize the event for weeks before it happened – going so far as to attempt to paint it with allegations of racism – should have been ashamed. The stage was filled with men and women of color, who, with the raucous support of the hundreds of thousands gathered, affirmed our solidarity as Americans. Dr. Alveda King reminded the crowd that we are ” united by blood as one race, the human race.”
The address given by Glenn Beck followed, calling the Nation to ‘Wake Up’. He told the hundreds of thousands gathered in the Nation’s Capitol that it was time to “Start the Heart of America again.” Framing his address with copious references to the founders and founding documents he used the backdrop of the Lincoln memorial and the Washington Memorial to accentuate his message.
He honored the heroism of the founders and the genius of the American experiment. However, he also acknowledged the limitations and the scars of those who helped found the American experiment. This was the most significant part of Beck’s address. He repeatedly explained to the crowd that scars and mistakes are invitations to learn, change, grow and improve – insisting that this is true for people and for Nations. He is correct.
He invited the crowd to continue the “unfinished work” which Abraham Lincoln referred to in his Gettysburg Address, telling those gathered to make a choice for the future. He proclaimed it is “…what we do from here that matters. this is the point of choice!” His final historical reference was to John Newton; the Captain of a Slave ship in the 1700’s who in the midst of a threatening storm at sea turned to God and was dramatically converted. He reformed his life and wrote the Hymn Amazing Grace, which Beck called the best song ever written for bagpipes. At that moment, bagpipers emerged and the melody of that song began.
As the platform filled with 240 religious leaders from every religious tradition, the crowd began to sing the hymn, led by an unidentified but gifted man whose beautiful voice enhanced the emotion laden moment. With a prayer led by a heroic man who overcame great obstacles in his own life, the whole point of the day was again underscored and the official part of the Rally to Restore Honor came to a conclusion.
Clearly, Glenn Beck’s dreams for a Rally which could “restart the heart of America” exceeded all expectations. Even the Press, which for days leading up to the event had minimized, mocked and trivialized the event, immediately began to acknowledge its massive size and possible significance. Then, they quickly regrouped and the punditry began all over again. I imagine the implications of the event will be fodder for much pontificating for weeks. However, any honest reporter must admit that this was clearly an historic event.
WaPo – By Avis Thomas-Lester, Hamil R. Harris and Krissah thompson
Thousands of people joined the Rev. Al Sharpton and other leaders Saturday to commemorate the anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington in 1963. The event, billed as “Reclaim the Dream,” included a five-mile march that culminated at the Mall, where conservative talk show host Glenn Beck had organized the simultaneous “Restoring Honor” rally.
In an interview before the gathering began at Dunbar High School in Northwest Washington, Sharpton said he called the event to show respect for the ideals of King, who made his famous “I Have a Dream” speech 47 years ago near where Beck spoke to thousands Saturday.
“People are clear in what Dr. King’s dream was about, and we will not react to those who try to distort that dream,” Sharpton said. He was one of several prominent leaders who condemned Beck’s rally, despite cries from organizers that “Restoring Honor” was not intended to dishonor King or his work.
Early at the event, a gospel choir took the stage after a fervent prayer by Barbara Williams-Skinner, president of the Skinner Leadership Institute.
“What do you do when you’ve given your all? Child, you just stand,” the crowd quietly sang.
Williams-Skinner made strong ties between the 1963 rally at which King spoke of his “dream” and the rally at the Northwest Washington high school. “Like Dr. King, we believe that the bank of justice is not bankrupt,” she said. “We thank you God for raising up President Barack Obama as a small down payment on that dream.”
Bianca Farmer, a senior at Dunbar, drew applause when she told the crowd to continue to celebrate the achievement that Obama represents. “We must be fearful of stopping there,” she said. “The fight is not in the same arena as it was 47 years ago, but the fight lives on.”
Some leaders Saturday pointed to what they characterized as lost ground in the quest for the principles that King held dear. “When I look at my television, I don’t see the King crowd of blacks and whites together,” said Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), who worked as an aide for King at the 1963 march.
NAACP President Ben Jealous said: “We are not sure what the message of the Beck rally is, since he told them to leave their signs at home. We have to revitalize jobs and schools and reclaim Dr. King’s dream.”
Education Secretary Arne Duncan told the rally participants that education is the civil rights issue of this generation. “Parents: Turn off the television. Educators: We have to stop making excuses,” he said. “The dividing line in our country today is less around white and black and more about educational opportunity. We’ve been too satisfied with second-class schools.”…]
CNN – NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous, speaking at the “Reclaim the Dream” rally Saturday, castigated the message of the Glenn Beck rally across town in Washington.
“For a year and a half, we’ve been subjected to small hearts and small minds on our small screens,” he said, referring to conservative ideas on media. Beck is a conservative talk show host, with a program on Fox News as well as several radio programs.
Urging people to continue to fight for issues like health care and the ideas of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., Jealous said, “It’s time to make sure our country – when they turn on the TV – sees itself reflected back.”
ABC News – By JOHN R. PARKISON
Black Leaders Outraged Over ‘Restoring Honor’ Rally
A civil rights activist and former congressman equated the Tea Party with the Ku Klux Klan today as he blasted a conservative rally planned in Washington, D.C., this weekend.
The Rev. Walter Fauntroy, the non-voting delegate who represented the District of Columbia from 1971 to 1991, called on African-Americans to organize a “new coalition of conscience” to rebut the rally scheduled for Saturday at the Lincoln Memorial featuring Fox News pundit Glenn Beck and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
“We are going to take on the barbarism of war, the decadence of racism, and the scourge of poverty, that the Ku Klux — I meant to say the Tea Party,” Fauntroy told a news conference today at the National Press Club. “You all forgive me, but I — you have to use them interchangeably.”
Fauntroy attempted to explain the comparison to white supremacists by saying that organizers behind the “Restoring Honor” rally are the same people who cut audio cables from a sound system the night before the historic March on Washington and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial.
By Sarah Palin
Thank you so much. Are you not so proud to be an American?
What an honor. What an honor.
We stand today at the symbolic crossroads of our nation’s history. All around us are monuments to those who have sustained us in word or deed. There in the distance stands the monument to the father of our country. And behind me, the towering presence of the Great Emancipator who secured our union at the moment of its most perilous time and freed those whose captivity was our greatest shame.
And over these grounds where we are so honored to stand today, we feel the spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who on this very day, two score and seven years ago, gave voice to a dream that would challenge us to honor the sacred charters of our liberty – that all men are created equal.
Now, in honoring these giants, who were linked by a solid rock foundation of faith in the one true God of justice, we must not forget the ordinary men and women on whose shoulders they stood. The ordinary called for extraordinary bravery. I am speaking, of course, of America’s finest – our men and women in uniform, a force for good in this country, and that is nothing to apologize for.
Abraham Lincoln once spoke of the “The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battle-field, and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearthstone, all over this broad land.” For over 200 years, those mystic chords have bound us in gratitude to those who are willingly to sacrifice, to restrain evil, to protect God-given liberty, to sacrifice all in defense of our country.
They fought for its freedom at Bunker Hill, they fought for its survival at Gettysburg, and for the ideals on which it stands – liberty and justice for all – on a thousand battlefields far from home.
It is so humbling to get to be here with you today, patriots – you who are motivated and engaged and concerned, knowing to never retreat. I must assume that you too know that we must not fundamentally transform America as some would want. We must restore America and restore her honor!
Now, I’ve been asked to speak today, not as a politician. No, as something more – something much more. I’ve been asked to speak as the mother of a soldier, and I am proud of that distinction. You know, say what you want to say about me, but I raised a combat vet, and you can’t take that away from me. I’m proud of that distinction, but it is not one that I had imagined because no woman gives birth thinking that she will hand over her child to her country, but that’s what mothers have done from ancient days.
In cities and towns across our country, you’ll find monuments to brave Americans wearing the uniforms of wars from long ago, and look down at their inscriptions, you’ll see that they were so often dedicated by mothers. In distant lands across the globe, you’ll find silent fields of white markers with the names of Americans who never came home, but who showed their dedication to their country by where they died.
We honor those who served something greater than self and made the ultimate sacrifice, as well as those who served and did come home forever changed by the battlefield. Though this rally is about “restoring honor,” for these men and women honor was never lost! If you look for the virtues that have sustained our country, you will find them in those who wear the uniform, who take the oath, who pay the price for our freedom.
And I’d like to tell you three stories of such Americans – three patriots – who stand with us today.
The first is a man named Marcus Luttrell. His story is one of raw courage in the face of overwhelming odds. It’s also a story of America’s enduring quest for justice. Remember, we went to Afghanistan seeking justice for those who were killed without mercy by evil men on September 11th. And one fateful day in Afghanistan on a mountain ridge, Marcus and three of his fellow Navy SEALs confronted the issue of justice and mercy in a decision that would forever change their lives.
They were on a mission to hunt down a high-level Taliban leader, but they were faced with a terrible dilemma when some men herding goats stumbled upon their position, and they couldn’t tell if these men were friend or foe. So the question was what to do with them? Should they kill them or should they let them go and perhaps risk compromising their mission? They took a vote. They chose mercy over self-preservation.
They set their prisoners free. The vote said it was the humane thing to do. It was the American thing to do. But it sealed their fate because within hours, over a hundred Taliban forces arrived on the scene. They battled the four Navy SEALs throughout the surrounding hills. A rescue helicopter came, but it was shot down. By the time the sun set on June 28, 2005, it was one of the bloodiest days for American forces in Afghanistan.
19 brave, honorable men were lost that day. Marcus was the sole survivor. Alone, stranded, badly wounded, he limped and crawled for miles along that mountain side. What happened next is a testament to the words: “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall be shown mercy.”
Marcus and his team showed mercy in letting their prisoners free. And later he was shown mercy by Afghan villagers who honored an ancient custom of providing hospitality to any stranger who would ask for it. They took him in. They cared for him, efused to hand him over to the Taliban. They got him back safely to our forces.
Marcus’ story teaches us that even on the worst battlefield against the most brutal enemy, we adhere to our principles. This American love of justice and mercy is what makes us a force for good in this world. Marcus is a testament to that.
Please join me in honoring retired U.S. Navy SEAL Petty Officer Marcus Luttrell.
From the time he first heard men marching to a cadence call, Eddie Wright had one dream in life, and that was to be a United States Marine. And as a Marine serving in Iraq, his company was ambushed in Fallujah. He was knocked out when a rocket propelled grenade hit his Humvee. When he came to, he saw that both his hands were gone and his leg was badly wounded.
He couldn’t fire his weapon, he could barely move, and he was bleeding to death. But he had the strength of mind to lead the men under his command, and that is exactly what he did. He kept them calm, he showed them how to stop the bleeding in his leg, he told them where to return fire, he had them call for support, and he got them out of there alive.
His composure under fire that day earned him the Bronze Star with Valor device. But if you ask him, “What did you get it for?”, he’ll tell you, “Just for doing my job.”
After a long recovery, Eddie continued to serve as a martial arts instructor. He resigned from his beloved Marine Corps a few years ago, but he still lives by the motto: “Once a Marine, always a Marine.”
And if you want to see the American spirit of never retreating, no matter the odds – of steady confidence and optimism, no matter the setbacks – look at Eddie’s story. No matter how tough times are, Americans always pull through. As Eddie put it himself: “We don’t really foster the attitude of I can’t. When you have an obstacle in front of you, you just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and focus on what you can.”
So, please join me in honoring retired Marine Sergeant James “Eddie” Wright.
Tom Kirk was an Air Force squadron commander and a combat pilot who had flown over 150 missions in Korea and Vietnam. One day on a routine mission over Hanoi, his plane was shot down. He spent the next five and a half years in that living hell known as the Hanoi Hilton.
Like his fellow prisoners, Tom endured the beatings, the torture, the hunger, the years of isolation. He described it, saying, “There was nothing to do, nothing to read, nothing to write. You had to just sit there in absolute boredom, loneliness, frustration, and fear. You had to live one day at a time, because you had no idea how long you were going to be there.”
After two years of solitary confinement, pacing back and forth in his cell — three and a half steps across, three and a half steps deep – Tom was finally moved to a larger holding cell with 45 other Americans prisoners, among them was a man named John McCain. In circumstances that defy description, this band of brothers kept each other alive, and one by one, they came home.
Tom was released on March 14, 1973. You might think that a man who had suffered so much for his country would be bitter and broken by it. But Tom’s heart was only filled with love – love for America – that special love of country that we call patriotism.
Tom wrote, “Patriotism has become, for many, a ‘corny’ thing. For me, it is more important now than at any time in my life. How wonderful it is to be an American come home!”
Friends, please join me in honoring retired Air Force Colonel Tom Kirk.
My fellow Americans, each one of these men here today faced terrible sufferings, overwhelming set-backs, and impossible odds.
And they endured! And their stories are America’s story.
We will always come through. We will never give up, and we shall endure because we live by that moral strength that we call grace. Because though we’ve often skirted a precipice, a providential hand has always guided us to a better future.
And I know that many of us today, we are worried about what we face. Sometimes our challenges, they just seem insurmountable.
But, here, together, at the crossroads of our history, may this day be the change point!
Look around you. You’re not alone. You are Americans!
You have the same steel spine and the moral courage of Washington and Lincoln and Martin Luther King. It is in you. It will sustain you as it sustained them.
So with pride in the red, white, and blue; with gratitude to our men and women in uniform; let’s stand together! Let’s stand with honor! Let’s restore America!
God bless you! And God bless America!
UPDATE: Glenn announced this morning on his radio show he was wearing a bullet proof vest. Alveeda King was offered a vest and she turned down the request by private security, citing her faith in God. Although not confirmed, many believe Sarah Palin was also wearing a bullet proof vest during the rally!
Related Previous Post:
Updated Politico Article w/Video Link & Added Link To Previous Post For Comparing Tea Party 9/12/09 To Beck Rally – end