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September 22, 2010 / J. Shaw

What Jon Stewart's Rally will be About

Are you tired of the extremes dominating the debate? Angry about hyperpartisans hijacking American politics? Well, Jon Stewart has a rally for you and me.

The Rally to Restore Sanity is slated for October 30, the weekend before Election Day, on the Washington Mall.

This isn’t a concealed campaign rally for either party. It’s a counterprotest against the rising tide of conformity that causes hyperpartisans to demonize people with whom they disagree. It’s the anti-demagogue Saturday on the mall; people taking to the streets and yelling, “Be reasonable!”

Here’s how Stewart described it on “The Daily Show”: “We live in troubled times, with real people who have real problems. … Problems that have real but imperfect solutions, that I believe 70 to 80 percent of our population could agree to try, and ultimately live with. Unfortunately, the conversation and the process is controlled by the other 15 to 20 percent.

"Daily Show" host Jon Stewart is planning a rally for moderates on the weekend before Election Day.

“Daily Show” host Jon Stewart is planning a rally for moderates on the weekend before Election Day.

Among the signs suggested for the rally:

— “I disagree with you, but I’m pretty sure you’re not Hitler”

— “9/11 was an outside job”

— “Got Competence?”

— “I’m not afraid of Muslims, Tea Partiers, Socialists, Immigrants, Gun Owners or Gays … but I am scared of spiders.”

— “Take it Down a Notch For America”

In the week since the Rally to Restore Sanity was announced, more than 100,000 people have signed up on Facebook (not exactly a scientific measure of success but a good gauge of interest), and more than 900,000 people have watched the announcement on the Comedy Central website.

For those who like their mock politics laced with paranoia, the indispensable Stephen Colbert is offering an alternative to the earnestness with his “Keep Fear Alive” rally. Those three words sum up an entire established media and political strategy.


Artilce:Jon Stewart has the right idea by John P. Avlon


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