Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Second Thoughts on the Beck-Palin Rally

I talked to my sister last night, after posting my first blog. We dissected the political news of the day, as we always do - she from her home in South Carolina and I from my home in Switzerland. It would seem we wouldn't have much to say with the distance between us and my absence from America. But, it's not so.
I have been more or less in the middle of politics all my life, as a Young Republican state officer in Pennsylvania and later a State Committeewoman. I was a political appointee of President Reagan and consider myself a lifelong GOPer. So, it's natural that I still follow events in the USA carefully. And often, I compare it to what's happening in Europe. 
The more I hear about Glen Beck and Sarah Palin's rally last weekend, the more I think it was mis-placed, if not mis-directed.
If they were really interested in religion and bringing Americans back to their faith, why didn't they go to the space outside the National Cathedral, where every denomination is represented in the funds raised over many years to complete its construction.
I think the answer to this question is that they weren't so interested in religion as they were in comparing themselves to Martin Luther King and the change he brought to America. Not that they would have stood on the Mall with him when he spoke those immortal words, but because they desperately need validation - of their ideas, of their tactics, of their personalities.
I read that Martin Luther King's personal secretary said he would have been proud of their uniting with him. That must give both Glen and Sarah pause. To consider their motives, to re-evaluate their goals, to reconsider whether they were using Martin Luther King just as much as they were using religion.
If you were to ask people in the street in Europe what the most important characteristics of Americans are, they would immediately say, wealth and religious spirit. That's who we are. Religious, charitable to a fault, and unique in our faith as expressed in our daily lives and in our democracy.
The last immensely popular preacher calling for Americans to return to the faith was Billy Sunday. We all remember him for what he was - a charlatan.
Sarah...Glen...find a better message. Bring out voters for better and more democratic government that listens and tries to respond by helping, not by spending America to her death. That's your role. Leave religion where it belongs - in our hearts, in our minds and in our good works.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Shame on you, Sarah

The Lincoln Memorial is sacred ground for a lot of Americans, and especially for Republicans who have a special reverence for the man who sits there looking down at us from his wise eyes. Mr. Linclon freed the slaves and we are all grateful to him for making it possible for America to become the land of the free in reality as well as in word.
But, last Saturday, a shocking misuse of Abraham Lincoln and his Memorial occurred.
Sarah Palin and Glen Beck used the Lincoln Memorial to rant at our President from the vantage point of the man who saved our country from division and slavery. Now, I disagree with Mr. Obama's policies just as broadly as they do, but there are times and places for disagreement and the Lincoln Memorial is not one of them. And I have been a Republican for longer then they have been alive, so no litmus test is necessary for me.
If Palin and Beck could see the images they created all over the world, and the stark comparison of Martin Luther King pleading for equality spliced into their modern day tirades, they should be ashamed. I saw the images and heard the commentary in Europe and it made me feel sad at heart to see the damage they are doing to our country.
For freedom's sake, Republicans, come to your senses and see them for what they are - demigods who would take away any freedom if it helped them achieve political power.
We can beat the Democrats in November by telling the truth about their ill-advised programs and financial mess.  We don't need Sarah Palin and Glen Beck to show us the way. They only make it harder for Americans to agree with us and support our candidates. 
Send your thoughts, please, and help us bring America back to her real roots. Casey Pops