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Glenn Beck Announces Yom Kippur Fast

His is for the Republic, not for redemption.

by
Allison Hoffman
September 22, 2009

We were busy last Saturday, and so we failed to notice that Fox News host Glenn Beck chose Rosh Hashanah to declare his latest initiative: a day of Fast and Prayer for the Republic. When, exactly, will this new fast day fall? Conveniently enough for us, on Yom Kippur! In a Twitter post, Beck exhorted his 132,735 followers to “spread the word. Let us walk in the founders steps.”

Luckily, National Jewish Democratic Council spokesman Aaron Keyak spent some time considering Beck’s proposal in his Huffington Post column, and offers three possibilities: that Beck was trying to co-opt the Jews, that Beck was trying to co-opt all of Yom Kippur, or, more plausibly, that Beck just didn’t really notice. “Maybe Beck will be surprised when his Jewish staff doesn’t show up on Monday,” Keyak wrote. “I bet he will be surprised when they take the Fast and Prayer Day for the Republic that seriously.”

But here’s a question Keyak didn’t consider: when Beck invoked “the founders,” was he talking about George Washington and his friends or Abraham and his sons? Because as far as we know, George Washington and Ben Franklin were neither Jews nor given to observing Yom Kippur, and, you know, there wasn’t any Republic to fast for way back 5770 years ago. Mysteries upon mysteries! Anyway, we’ll keep you posted on how the fast parties shape up.

Allison Hoffman is the executive editor of CNN Politics.

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