How Many Attended The Glenn Beck Rally?

August 29th, 2010

By Nancy Morgan

Glenn Beck's Rally in WashingtonThe question on the minds of millions of Americans this morning: How many people attended Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally yesterday in our nations’ capitol?

The answer to this question has ramifications far beyond mere crowd size. It is one of the few concrete indicators of the popularity and viability of the Tea Party and their message of traditional values, less government and a return to our Founders’ vision of America.

The New York Times described the crowd merely as “enormous and impassioned.” ABC was more specific, estimating the attendance at Beck’s Restoring Honor Rally in the “hundreds of thousands.” AP chimed in at “tens of thousands.”

Whether the attendance was 300,000 or one million, (you decide) the huge crowd gathered to hear conservative commentator Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and other notables, offered a compelling contrast to another rally being held across town held by Al Sharpton.

An estimated 3,000, most of whom were African-Americans, attended a rally/march hosted by Al Sharpton to commemorate the 47th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s famous “I Have A Dream” speech. Sharpton railed against the Tea Party as he informed the crowd that MLK’s dream “has not been achieved.”

The fact that America has elected a black president didn’t seem to faze Sharpton as he trotted out his familiar message of black oppression. Sharpton’s solution? Support Obama’s latest money grab, appealingly entitled a “jobs bill.” Yawn.

Jesse Jackson, who arbitrarily claimed the sole right to speak for Dr. Martin Luther King, was aghast that Glenn Beck dared to infringe on his territory. Jackson told CNN that Beck was mimicking King and “humiliating the tradition.”

NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous followed up, castigating the message of the Glenn Beck rally across town. “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.

Meanwhile, Martin Luther King’s niece, Dr. Alveda King, offered a different message at the Glenn Beck rally. A message of hope and an appeal to honor.

The message of the Restoring Honor rally was more religious than political, with many speakers openly professing their Christian faith, including Beck. Obama’s name wasn’t mentioned once in the 200 minutes of speeches. And the Mall was left spic and span.

Sharpton’s “Reclaim the Dream” rally offered a telling contrast. Both in terms of size and in terms of the message. This contrast is good news for America. A portent that the much abused race card may, finally, be losing its potency. An indication that millions of Americans value character, honor and God over racial politics.

The times, they are a changin’. For years, race hustlers have tried to keep the race card alive. After all, white guilt has proved very lucrative for Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and the segment of the black population that seek to divide Americans by race.

What does it say about Sharpton’s message when one contrasts the 3,000 attendees to the hundreds of thousands of people across town at the Beck rally who were focused on honor as opposed to the color of one’s skin?

This is good news, America. Good news that may signal a death knell for racial and grievance politics and, hopefully, a return to basic American values that are shared by all Americans, regardless of their color.

Who knows, maybe one day soon Al Sharpton may have to go out and get a real job. And maybe one day soon, our elected officials will recognize that America is still a Christian nation. Hope springs eternal.

(This article was also posted at Right Bias.)

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5 Responses to “How Many Attended The Glenn Beck Rally?”

  1. Tom Carter |

    I have no problem with people organizing and gathering to demonstrate their support for or opposition to anything, whether I agree or disagree, whether it’s a dozen people at a town hall meeting or hundreds of thousands on the Mall. That’s an outstanding demonstration of the American rights of freedom of speech and assembly.

    I do have a problem with your contention that the U.S. is a “Christian nation.” The Founders used religious language in the founding documents, yes, but that was the kind of language used in those days. If public documents were written that way today, the language would be considered to be (and would be) inappropriate. More important, some of the Founders (including some of the most prominent) weren’t Christians themselves, at least not in the normal sense. They were deists and/or Unitarians.

    If you mean that the majority of religious people in the U.S. are Christian, that’s a fact. If you go any further with that, it’s wrong. People of every religious belief, or none, are equal citizens in every respect, which isn’t true in the normal sense of a nation and it’s government being of a religious nature.

    You noted that most of the few people who attended Sharpton’s rally were African-Americans. Wouldn’t it have been equally relevant to observe that most of the people attending Beck’s rally were white?

    I would also add that Beck has been somewhat disingenuous about the rally. First he claimed that he didn’t think about it being on the anniversary of King’s event, as though it were just a coincidence. Then he tried to cast himself as a modern-day MLK in his speech, and Palin referenced it, too. This whole thing reminds me of Lloyd Bentsen’s comment to Dan Quayle — “Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy.” Indeed.

  2. Dan Miller |

    Gosh darn! Here is a truly thoughtful and perceptive analysis of the rally. It begins,

    Yesterday, a nut-job demagogue held a huge rally in Washington, D.C. Meanwhile, a majority of Americans object to the building of a peaceful cultural center in New York and one in five “believe” that the president is a Muslim, as though someone else’s professed religion is a matter for national referendum.

    With Labor Day around the corner, it’s time to admit it.

    The country has gone bonkers. We’re as feverish as a bad heat wave. Folks, behold the summer of our raging insanity.

    If I didn’t know better, I’d think that maybe the hundreds of thousands (or whatever) of folks at the rally got under the skins of some folks.

  3. Dan Miller |

    I have found a reason for some of the disenchantment with the folks at the rally. The dirty rotten filthy Nazi Fascist scum cleaned up after themselves. How very thoughtless and inhumane! This may mean unemployment for sanitation workers; think of the poor pigeons! Won’t some caring person at least go dump some garbage cans around? Cleanliness is a sure sign of anti-environmentalist sentiment. They must all be right wing Christian nuts, as distinguished from those sane and rational Christians who agree with the perceptive analyst linked in my previous comment.

  4. Tom Carter |

    Dan, the article you linked to is over the top, of course. It’s the reverse form of the same kind of stuff that comes from right-wing sources. I have to agree on one point, though — Beck is a bit of a loon.

  5. Lisa |


    I am tired of hearing that there are not enough African Americans at Tea Party rallies and Becks event. I haven’t noticed that they attend left wing rallies (environment, pro choice, etc) either.

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