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Fun Friday: Faith Groups Plan ‘Faux-test’ at Stewart-Colbert Rally

posted by Nicole Neroulias

Comedy Central’s Daily Show host (and one of America’s top 50 influential Jews) Jon Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear”Sanityfearrally-poster.png — essentially a giant eyeroll at Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally and Al Sharpton’s “Reclaim the Dream” counter-march two months ago — is all set for tomorrow in Washington, D.C. The big question seems to be whether there will be a bigger turnout than the estimated tens/hundreds of thousands (depending on your source) at those August gatherings?

Satirical Comedy Central’s Colbert Report host (and devout Catholic) Stephen Colbert’s corresponding “March to Keep Fear Alive,” now combined with the sanity rally, will take its cue from Halloween, with participants dressed up as things that they fear. Given Colbert’s shtick about bears being soulless killing machines, I expect to see more than a few Mama Grizzly costumes.

In contrast to the August rally/march, there doesn’t seem to be an overtly religious component to this event — unless you count the rumored appearance of fictional Father Guido Sarducci! – but check out this People of Faith for Sanity “faux-test” being organized by Faithful America and Jewish Funds for Justice.

What do you think? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.

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posted October 29, 2010 at 1:32 pm

This is proof that we have WAY too much free time on our hands in this country. While we engage in culture war street theater, China is creating new computer technology and eating our lunch.

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posted October 29, 2010 at 1:54 pm

I’m going to be there “with bell’s on” and I never go to rallies or marches. In fact, the last march I went to was in support of the Green movement in Iran. Before that, it had been years since I went to a march.
This is a great thing, because it is not the usual suspects, though I suspect there will be a lot of folks (like me) with a moderate to liberal perspective.
Happy rally, to those who attend.

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Your Name

posted October 29, 2010 at 2:29 pm

Just an editing note: I believe it’s Father Guido Sarducci, not Sanducci.

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posted October 29, 2010 at 5:59 pm

I thought Don Novella was dead. Glad to hear that he is not.

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Nicole Neroulias

posted October 29, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Thanks, Your Name — I fixed the name.

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posted October 29, 2010 at 8:16 pm

It’s fine to go there and enjoy and hopefully get pepped up but the important thing is to then go home and get about a hundred friends and acquaintances to vote for Democrats. A vote for a Republican is a vote for more fear-mongering and incompetent governance.

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posted October 29, 2010 at 9:20 pm

With great candidates such as: Angle, O’Donnell, Paul, Miller, and amazing spokespersons such as Mama Grizzly, Glenn, Rush, Sean, Bill, Laura, et al… can you suggest that voting Republican would bring more fear-mongering and incompetent government?
I hope Stewart and Colbert get a much larger turn-out that Beck did in August.
And yes, we need to elect/re-elect Democrats.

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Neil Griffen

posted October 29, 2010 at 10:04 pm

Please do not take political sides here. I turn to these pages for inspiration and love. Political fights, even judgments about which side is more holy is inappropriate. We have already had enough of some Christians deriding other Christians. Lets us spiritually unite and pray for the wounded souls and let God work through others even if we personally disagree with them. I truly believe that I am following the highest path that I can. This does not include putting down others who do not walk the same path. I am tired of religions condemning each other instead of showing love.

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Mark Singer

posted October 29, 2010 at 10:19 pm

Neil, it’s a little late to ask people not to take political sides when Beliefnet has sold political advertising (in my case, the “Say No to Robin Carnahan” video by that appears on every single page, probably because I’m in Missouri). Beliefnet is only secondarily a “place for inspiration and love;” primarily, it is a commercial venture. I keep checking back in to see if I can find what I’m looking for here, but reality keeps shining through. Oh, well.

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Dave Lysle

posted October 29, 2010 at 11:14 pm

I will not be visiting this site any more. Your snide, liberal sarcasm shines through more brightly than any spiritual light you may have. I come here for spiriyuality not political demagoguery. Good bye.

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Mary Tember

posted October 29, 2010 at 11:21 pm

Yeah, elect democrats. Then more late-term abortions can be done. With babies being delivered feet first, then while their little hands and feet squirm in pain their skull is pierced with surgical scissors and their brain sucked out with a vacuum so the baby can be “delivered” dead. Go democrats. You evil fools.

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posted October 30, 2010 at 12:32 am

Actually if contraception is more available to people who know how to use it, and abortion is available on a timely basis there should be virtually no need for late term abortions. I believe they are quite rare anyway.
And of course there are a lot more issues.

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posted October 30, 2010 at 8:03 am

Im with Neil G.
As for Comedy Central’s idea of poking fun at fear..Im also for that. What Im not for, if it’s being done to mock the faithful

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Robert C

posted October 30, 2010 at 9:36 am

Actually there should be virtually no need for any abortion if people would think before they act, especially in this day and age of specialized contraception. Unfortunately, because we make it too damn easy, people will always take the easiest way out.

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Jay H

posted October 30, 2010 at 10:00 am

To imply that contraception is currently hard to obtain is akin to saying that people don’t realize that cigarettes are bad for them. Sex Ed in school has been ubiquitous for a generation now. Unplanned pregnancies are not the fault of society, rather simply a marker of personal irresponsibility.
NOW and the Dems own the blood of all the babies murdered since Roe v Wade . Joseph Stalin has a cleaner record than they!

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posted October 30, 2010 at 10:34 am

Sounds like a totally fun thing! Living too far from DC now, will just have to watch the “highlights” on the news.
JayH: The only person responsible for obtaining a termination is the woman who chooses to do so. Safe terminations are legal as they should be, and there is no blood on anyone’s (or political partie’s) hands. I do agree that any termination should be totally thought out, and IMO a woman should have one no later than 3 1/2 months, but again that is her choice.

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posted October 30, 2010 at 6:52 pm

Alicia, tell us about the Rally!
I liked Jon Stewarts serious ending. He said, “If we amplify everything, we hear nothing”. And said, “We all make compromises everyday to get where we want to go”. I’d add that the Republicans should have done this. They haven’t, and they say they won’t. They have done this because they want President Obama gone, they really don’t care that the citizens want to see compromises and something moving and being accomplished.

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posted October 30, 2010 at 8:07 pm

Jay I’m not interested in assigning blame for unwanted pregnancies, but for preventing them and when necessary solving them. The sex ed taught in schools run by Republican types is too often concentrated on abstinence and even teaching that real birth control is somehow bad.
Abstinence is fine as far as it goes but I understand it leads to a lot of mutual masturbation and oral sex. What’s worse is that we all come from millions of ancestors who enthusiastically inserted peg A into slot B, so it’s not at all surprising that abstinence often fails. When it does these young people need to know about and be willing to use an effective backup.

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posted November 1, 2010 at 11:26 am

Thanks, Henrietta,
Here is the post I sent to my church e-mail group and my movie club about the Rally – as you see, I liked the same quote from Jon Stewart as you:
“Well, there were an insane number of people at the Rally to Restore Sanity And/Or Fear yesterday on the National Mall. CBS News estimated the crowd at 215,000. I can attest that it was the biggest crowd I have ever been in. Wall-to-wall people, and getting there on the Metro was quite an experience. I was barely able to move by the time I got home at around 6:00 p.m., 3 hours after the Rally ended. But, it was so worth it! People came from all over the country to remind us that moderate voices deserve to be heard, too. There were many funny and silly and serious signs. Mine was boring, but I believe it:
“The Public Interest Before Politics, Party, or Power”
Jon Stewart’s serious remarks at the end of the Rally bear repeating:
“The enemy, Jon Stewart told the masses gathered on the Mall in Washington Saturday for his “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear,” is not people of faith, or activists, or those who want to have passionate argument, or those on the right, or those on the left.
The enemy, he argued, is not Americans at all. It is instead the false image of Americans being pushed by the cable news-driven media – what he called “the country’s 24-hour politico pundit perpetual panic conflictinator – that he said is broken and making the country’s problems worse.
“If we amplify everything, we hear nothing,” Stewart said, accusing media outlets of fearmongering and spotlighting extremists instead of reasonable Americans. He later added that the press is America’s immune system – and “if it overreacts to everything, we actually get sicker.”
Courtesy of Andrew Sullivan’s “Daily Dish” I love this quote from an attendee:
“The battle for the American mind right now is between talk show hosts and comedians,” said Alex Foxworthy, a 26-year-old doctoral student from Richmond, Va. “I choose the comedians.”
NB: I sent this post to a very conservative friend of mine, and he liked it so much that he sent it to his e-mail friends and acquaintances.
The Daily Beast has great coverage:
From “The Daily Beast” this collection of the 7 best moments from the Rally. The video clips are short (about 2 minutes each) and the tribute to the Chilean miners at the beginning of the story is great:

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Grumpy Old Person

posted November 3, 2010 at 10:15 am

“Actually there should be virtually no need for any abortion if people would think before they act, especially in this day and age of specialized contraception.”
Too bad so many Republicans want to eliminate access to contraception, as most certainly do the Catholics.

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Robert C

posted November 3, 2010 at 11:07 am

“Too bad so many Republicans want to eliminate access to contraception, as most certainly do the Catholics”
Where the hell did you get that idea?

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