Those six great Americans are the most storied leaders of our nation’s civil rights movement, with Beck the latest to join the pantheon.
Now some of you are saying Beck differs from the other civil rights movement leaders, and not just with the tennis ball haircut. No, Beck is white, as are almost all of his followers, whereas the other aforementioned civil rights leaders were black, as were most of their followers.
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But as Beck has pointed out, black Americans “don’t own Martin Luther King.” Beck, therefore, is claiming him.
Look at their similarities, after all. Both had body types that charitably could be described as chunky. They also shared … well, we don’t want to get off-track right now, but we’ll finish that thought before we end this column.
And let’s be honest about it. As many parts of this country become majority minority, we oppressed white folk surely need a leader to make certain our civil rights and Costco memberships are protected. Who better than Glenn Beck?
Beck has claimed he and his followers, much like King and his followers, may soon be facing water cannons, police dogs and billy clubs from the oppressive government — along with attacks from radical leftists who will hit Beck followers with a flower and do it every hour — as those of us in Beck’s flock assert our essential rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of two parking spaces for the SUV.
Beck is having a rally in front of the Lincoln Memorial this Aug. 28, which is the place and date where King gave his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. Rumors that Beck’s speech that day will be called “I Have a Delusion” are unfair and untrue.
Beck has said, despite his current campaign of rewriting American history, that he was unaware until after he picked the date for his rally that King’s speech also had been presented on Aug. 28.
Beck believes that there was “divine providence” in God leading him to select that day so he would be even more in line with Martin Luther King Jr.
What is baffling is why so many people won’t acknowledge Beck as a great civil rights leader, insisting that he is in fact a racist.
Yes, most subjects of his deserved wrath are black or Jewish — Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Eric Holder, Keith Ellison, Rahm Emanuel, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Cass Sunstein, Maxine Waters, David Axelrod, Van Jones, the list goes on because there are a lot of people he rightfully hates. And yes, Beck said he believes Barack Obama hates white people and is a racist, and while he didn’t have much to back that up, he had a strong feeling, and for those of us who believe in Glenn, that is enough.
But just as black leaders had to work to get oppressors such as Bull Conner out of power, we, the Beck legions, must remove oppressors such as all of the above from office to get the rights and freedoms we deserve as the best Americans around.
Anyway, as Beck so wonderfully points out, much of what you read about the civil rights movement, segregation and slavery in your history books was slanted by progressives to make blacks and their supporters think things were tougher than they were.
Beck and his partner in rewriting American history, David Barton — one of the special Americans who led the movement to have bad Americans Thurgood Marshall, Cesar Chavez and Thomas Jefferson removed from history books in the Texas public schools — are pushing to change black history, to show while we might have had slavery in the United States until the 1860s, and might have had legal segregation well into the second part of the previous century, some individual black folks prospered and excelled.
There was that guy on the boat when Washington crossed the Delaware and there was that guy who was the city clerk in a town in Pennsylvania. And those two did those things even while we still had slavery in this country.
So that means there were probably some other black folks who did OK, too, right?
Now when blacks start complaining about slavery, segregation and discrimination, we can not only say it was long ago but we can insist it wasn’t all that bad.
That is the kind of civil rights leadership that only Glenn Beck could provide.
>> Bret Kofford teaches writing at San Diego State University-Imperial Valley campus. He can be reached at Kofford@roadrunner.com