Thousands gathered in the Northwest part of Washington, D.C. this past weekend for what appeared to be the largest patriotic assembly of white people ever to restore honor in racism.
A gathering of Latinos or Blacks would be seen as a threat on the capital, alas this mob of Glenn Beck followers were free to voice their anger and frustration. On the 47th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” speech, Glenn Beck and his followers gathered on the same steps where MLK had stood, but this time the message was strikingly different: reclaiming the honor of an America before a black man was President or Attorney General, an America where immigrants were mostly lesser Europeans, an America that had lost all credibility in international affairs under the presidency of George W. Bush.
The large gathering was referred to as whitestock, since it lacked racial diversity. We had men dressed in “I love Haliburton” t-shirts and even one who claimed that blacks own slaves in countries like “Mauitania” (correct spelling: Mauritania).
Glenn Beck decided to stay clear of Obama-bashing and set a religious tone for the event. But for the right-wing, the religious is political. Religion is a political device used to divide and conquer: deny women the right to choose, discriminate against people based on their sexual orientation, paint the President as a Muslim in order to build opposition to his policies.
Before Barack Obama became President, such an assembly would have been referred to as the Ku Klux Klan rally. But a public display of racial intolerance is getting more tolerable in post-racial America and even branded as patriotic nowadays. After all, racism is more acceptable when shrouded in red, white and blue.