2010 Stewart-Colbert Rally

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2010 Stewart-Colbert Rally
Rima Kikani > Senior > English > UMBC
Today, the nation is about to witness one of the biggest face-off in the history of the National Mall. A battle more dramatic than the Aniston-Jolie War, more interesting than any Palin-Couric interview- On October 30, Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart will simultaneously lead the “March to Keep Fear Alive” and “Rally to Restore Sanity,” respectively.




According to The Rev. Sir Dr. Stephen Colbert, America was founded upon three fundamental principles: freedom, liberty, and fear—of being deprived of freedom and liberty. However, Dr. Colbert says there are certain “optimistic forces trying to take away our fear—forces with salt and pepper hair and way more Emmys than they need.”

He argues that these forces want to replace fear with reason, but we can’t let them get away with something so atrocious. “Pack an overnight bag with five extra sets of underwear—you’re going to need them,” he advises to those who want to join the march. Participants are also encouraged to wear costumes, preferably dress up as their biggest fear.
“I feel like it’s mean spirited because it sends a message that some people’s beliefs are not valid because they are too extreme when, in reality, extreme views got us to where we are today,” argues Amanda Brown, a senior at American University, who favors moderation.
However, she acknowledges that today’s political parties have become so polarized that moderate voters, “find themselves trying to vote for the lesser of two evils rather than a candidate they believe in.”
Across the fence, Stewart will command the “Rally to Restore Sanity” for all the people who are too busy to go to rallies- meaning the ones who actually have friends, families, and social lives. He believes that the only time it’s appropriate to draw a Hitler mustache on someone is when that person is actually Hitler (or Charlie Chaplin in certain roles).
UMBC junior Shauna Lewis* says she’s excited about Colbert’s march: “I know it’s a little silly, but I can’t wait to go…I want to dress up as Hitler [as a tribute to both sides].” Both pseudo-rallies, open to the public, will run from 12:00PM-3:00PM on the National Mall in Washington D.C.

 On a serious note, news reports have argued that the rallies are a satirical comeback at Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally. Beck led the event to “restore honor in America,” but received criticism for the rally’s theme as well as for hosting it at the Lincoln Memorial (site of Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech) on its 47th anniversary.

 “I originally wasn’t planning on going to the rally because my parents went to Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor rally. I felt like I would be disrespecting them by going to this rally that is clearly mocking Restoring Honor,” reveals Brown.

 Despite the mock competition, Facebook pages show that over 100,000 people plan to attend. Most Washington D.C. hotels have also been booked. And those who can’t make it to D.C. have proposed sister rallies on the same day around the country.
 Anya Gomez, an undergraduate at Penn State University, explains that the commute is too far for her but, “I’d love for us to have a sister march here [at Penn]. That way, students who can’t go to D.C. can participate as well.”

 Overall, students are looking forward to the face-off. “I think the rallies and even the comedian talk show hosts are able to get young individuals interested in politics—something that many Americans take for granted,” says UMBC senior Alethea Paul, who plans to attend.

Let the madness begin.


*Name changed 

Image courtesy of digitaljournal.com

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