As a T.V. event, though, Jon, your rally was lacking. Why not blame Colbert?
The text of Stewart's speech below is from examiner.com, though I shortened it a bit and made changes based on the video above from youtube, which I found on this site.
“I can’t control what people think this was. I can only tell you my intentions. This was not a rally to ridicule people of faith or people of activism or to look down our noses at the heartland or passionate argument or to suggest that times are not difficult and that we have nothing to fear. They are and we do. But we live now in hard times, not end times. And we can have animus and not be enemies.
The country’s 24 hour political pundit perpetual panic conflictinator did not cause our problems. But its existence makes solving them that much harder. The press can hold its magnifying up to our problems bringing them into focus, illuminating issues heretofore unseen. Or they can use that magnifying glass to light ants on fire ... .
If we amplify everything, we hear nothing. There are terrorists and racists and Stalinists and theocrats, but those are titles that must be earned. You must have the resume. Not being able to distinguish between real racists and Tea Partiers or real bigots and Juan Williams or Rick Sanchez is an insult, not only to those people, but to the racists themselves who have put in the exhausting effort it takes to hate! Just as the inability to distinguish terrorists from Muslims makes us less safe, not more.
The press is our immune system. If it overreacts to everything we actually get sicker and, perhaps, eczema.
And, yet, with that being said, I feel good. Strangely, calmly, good. Because the image of Americans that is reflected back to us by our political and media process is false. It is us through a fun house mirror, and not the good kind that makes you look slim in the waist and maybe taller, but the kind where you have a giant forehead and an ass shaped like a month old pumpkin ... .
We hear every damn day about how fragile our country is, on the brink of catastrophe, torn by polarizing hate, and how it’s a shame that we can’t work together to get things done. But the truth is, we do. We work together to get things done every damn day.
The only place we don’t is here or on cable T.V. But Americans don’t live here or on cable T.V. Where we live, our values and principles form the foundation that sustains us, while we get things done, not the barriers that prevent us from getting things done. Most Americans don’t live their lives solely as Democrats, Republicans, liberals or conservatives. Americans live their lives more as people that are just a little bit late for something they have to do. Often something they do not want to do. But they do it. Impossible things that are only made possible through the little reasonable compromises that we all make. ...
There's nother car—an investment banker, gay, also likes Oprah. Another car’s a Latino carpenter. Another car, a fundamentalist vacuum salesman. Atheist obstetrician. Mormon Jay-Z fan. But this is us. Every one of the cars that you see is filled with individuals of strong belief and principles they hold dear, often principles and beliefs in direct opposition to their fellow travelers.
And yet these millions of cars must somehow find a way to squeeze, one by one, into a mile long 30 foot wide tunnel carved underneath a mighty river. Carved by people, by the way, who I’m sure had their differences. And they do it. Concession by concession. You go, then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go. Oh my gosh, is that an NRA sticker on your car? Is that an Obama sticker on your car? Uh, well that’s okay, you go, and then I’ll go.
And sure, at some point there will be a selfish jerk who zips up the shoulder and cuts in at the last minute, but that individual is rare and he is scorned and not hired as an analyst.
Because we know, instinctively as a people, that if we are to get through the darkness and back into the light we have to work together. And the truth is, there will always be darkness. And sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t the promised land. Sometimes, it’s just New Jersey. But we do it anyway, together.
Image: rally attendee Sarah Gerwig- Moore.