Saturday, August 28, 2010

Isn't this a fire hazard?

The big straw man Al Sharpton sets up here, that is:

"They have a right to rally. But what they don't have the right do is distort what Dr. King's dream was about," the Rev. Al Sharpton declared Friday. He called the tea party assembly an anti-government action and has organized a counter rally also near the site of King's historic speech.
So the tea partiers are anarchists now? I don't mean to say there's anything particularly wrong with anarchism, but I don't understand why Al Sharpton can't at least tell the undistorted truth about what the tea party is about -- SMALLER government, NOT no government at all -- other than, of course, the fact that Sharpton is an inveterate demagogue.

Speaking of inveterate demagoguery, how about this?

"As an experienced politician, I know that things do not happen by accident. If they happen, somebody planned it. And I say that someone planned to hijack the site and the message of Martin Luther King Jr. in an effort to use it against the very principles of inclusion that we talk about in America," said the Reverend Walter Fauntroy, who marched with King and was by his side during the speech forty-seven years ago.
"Fast forward now to August 28, 2010, and one has to admit that those who oppose our nation's vaunted ‘universal value of inclusion’ have seized the hallowed ground of the Lincoln Memorial on the 47th anniversary of that watershed moment in time to promote their universal values of exclusion," (Fauntroy) says. "Their purpose is to turn the clock back to a time when, in America, black people and women, and native Americans and non-white immigrants had no rights to jobs and freedom that white men were 'bound to respect.'
I don't see how Glenn Beck's and Sarah Palin's smaller-government message promotes any value of exclusion. That's quite a message Fauntroy's promoting to American blacks, i.e., "Only a big, powerful, overreaching government can protect you." Talk about inclusion on his part -- that's insulting to damn near everyone, no matter his or her race.

It's insulting to blacks because it implies they can't look out for themselves and their own best interests -- it implies that they need government to do it for them.

It's insulting to whites, Hispanics and everyone else because it carries the implication that we are as blinded by racial hatred as we were 45 years ago.

And it's insulting to all those -- black, white or whatever other color -- who gave their freedoms or their lives to see to it that blacks were treated better in this country, because it implies their sacrifices were all for nothing, when an honest look at American society in 2010 clearly shows that not to be the case.

I don't mean to say that things are quite where they should be, but I don't think there's any question we have come a very long way in terms of race relations in this country. We still have a way to go, but I think Dr. King would be proud, even as he saw and observed the need for more. And I honestly don't think he would see a Leviathan federal government as the only thing ultimately standing between American blacks and firehoses, lynchings, etc. I think he might well have agreed with Thomas Jefferson that "a government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have." And I really think he would have liked what Beck and Palin were promoting because the idea of smaller government is ultimately all about personal responsibility and accountability. I mean, I'd really like to think MLK would have seen those properties as integral to the freedom he sought for blacks, because it could never be fully possessed any other way.

And, again, you will note there is not a word about King's niece speaking at Glenn Beck's event. You'd think any journalist truly worthy of the craft would have asked the good Reverend Fauntroy about that. I'm sure he has an opinion about it that he'd be more than willing to voice.