September 11 is a very important day for Glenn Beck. For one thing, the king of all right-wing media talks about it all the time -- more on that in a second. What's more, the horrors of Sept. 11, 2001, as pretty much the event that made the Fox News Channel host into the national lightning rod that he is today -- the vehicle that caused him to complete his journey from a Morning Zoo "rodeo clown" to a political guy who suddenly was replacing the so-9/10 Laura Schlessinger on radio outlets coast to coast and then leading a series of transparently self-serving honoring the troops rallies for Clear Channel.
But Beck has talked a lot about 9/11 over nine years -- and the highly notable exception of his bizarre September 2005 attack on the family members of victims of the terrorist attack -- the emphasis has been on extreme reverence for that day in American history. When he was getting off the ground on FNC, he used the images of 9/11 to launch project he claimed would bring Americans back together.
As recounted in my new book The Backlash, he said on his now imfamous March 13, 2009 "We Surround Them" program of the attacks that...
“[t]he skies were filled with black clouds and our hearts were full of terror and fear. We realized -- for the first time -- how fragile we really were.” As Beck addressed his coast-to-coast audience, viewers saw images of anguished, tearful women, head in hands, mouths agape, staring at the hellish fires of the World Trade Center, then a mother racing down a Manhattan byway pushing two children in a stroller, away from the deadly dust.