Drew Zahn is a WND news editor who cut his journalist teeth as a member of the award-winning staff of Leadership, Christianity Today's professional journal for church leaders. A former pastor, he is the editor of seven books, including Movie-Based Illustrations for Preaching & Teaching, which sparked his ongoing love affair with film and his weekly WND column, "Popcorn and a (world)view."More ↓Less ↑
Hundreds of thousands of Americans already have marched on Washington, D.C., and millions have been energized by the nationwide tea-party movement, but from Sept. 9-12, the patriotic protesters will gather again in the nation’s capital to pick up the tools they say are needed to “take back America.”
More than just another rally, the 2010 March on D.C. is a four-day long series of events, combining the efforts of more than 50 grassroots organizations and targeted at training and equipping tea partiers to make a difference in the 2010 elections and beyond.
“This will be probably be the most important election in any of our lives,” declares Stephani Scruggs, national co-chair of The 9.12 Project and president of Unite In Action, which have spearheaded organization of the event. “But November doesn’t fix everything. We need to teach people how to protect their local areas, states and regions from sharia law, government land grabs, rogue school boards and any attempts to erode American freedom.
“So what we’re doing is real, classroom training,” Scruggs told WND. “There’s been a lot of events with famous people and politicians talking, but what we wanted to do differently was to allow people to go home on the Monday afterward with the tools to preserve liberty for the long term.”
The four-day event, which will be based at Washington’s Omni Shoreham Hotel, will include a symposium of training events – including the Young Patriots Tour, the Religious Leaders Roundtable and others – as well as presentations and seminars by over a dozen grassroots groups, a concert, VIP reception, ladies’ banquet and an expo featuring displays and exhibits from a myriad of tea-party organizations.
Best of all, Scruggs told WND, the Liberty XPO (Xhibit of Patriot Organizations) and Syposium, which includes the training seminars and presentations, will be free.
“We found a way to make it free so even the unemployed construction worker, the waitress from down at the diner, those who can’t afford to go to one of the expensive conferences, any regular guy can go,” Scruggs said.
In fact, only the VIP reception – featuring a meet-and-greet with Alan Keyes, actor Stephen Baldwin and others – and the “Remember the Ladies” banquet – featuring the founder of Liberty Central, Ginni Thomas, actress Morgan Brittany and others – still require the purchase of tickets.
Scruggs also told WND, however, that – contrary to political pundits and lampooners of the tea-party movement – the event isn’t free because of some fat-cat corporate sponsors.
“We initially had interest from two corporations, but they backed out. One said, and I quote, ‘Honestly, we’re afraid of what the Obama administration will do to us if we openly support the march,’” Scruggs said. “We have no corporate sponsors. We’re doing this through fundraising and ticket sales, negotiations, by the skin of our teeth.
“It’s really all about the $5 donations from Grandma Marge in Minnesota and $10 donations from here and there,” she said.
No. 10: My congressman doesn’t hear me, so I’m going to try some “sign” language
No. 9: It’s an opportunity to hang out with like-minded patriots, like you
No. 8: I want to see if the mass media has learned how to count yet
No. 7: I want to show off my grass stains; there’s no Astroturf here
No. 6: Mrs. Pelosi, this [showing pair of comfortable athletic shoes] is what real working women’s shoes look like
No. 5: I believe to save the Constitution, we need to read it, and I’d like to share the “Save it, Read it” attitude with every patriot there
No. 4, No. 3, No. 2 and No. 1: My children. As a mom, I want to let D.C. know how I feel about what they have been doing with my children’s futures.
Scruggs has also posted a video, including her heart-rending decision to set aside other family priorities to pursue the fight for liberty:
Scruggs told WND her decision to get involved was cemented by a perceived loss of religious freedom in her local public school, where, she says, teachers aren’t allowed to wear crosses, participate in student-led religious clubs or even say “God bless you” when a student sneezes.
She recounted a story of a student class president barred from speaking at her own graduation by an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit that alleged the student is “a known Christian and she might say something about God.”
“First the government schools won’t allow me and my family to have the ability to express religious freedom,” Scruggs said, “now the government is telling me with health-care laws what I do and don’t have to do for my children’s health.”
When WND asked Scruggs why she’s so devoted to the tea party cause, she answered, “I have a six- and four-year-old, and I want them to grow up in the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
Details on the planned events, how to contribute, discount rates at the Omni Shoreham Hotel and more can be found at the March on D.C. website.