Did NPR reporter Liz Halloran just call Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr., who is an organizer of the counter protest to that Glenn Beck thingy, a “civil rights leader?” She sure did:
Civil rights leaders like D.C. City Councilman Harry “Tommy” Thomas Jr. have organized the “Reclaim the Dream” countermarch in a bid to blunt the symbolism of Beck’s Lincoln Memorial event. “We can’t allow another group to skillfully use that day, and use the greatest orator and his speech, to promote their political ideals,” Thomas says.
“This has been purposefully done — it is hypocrisy at its highest degree,” he argues, calling it “just another tactic of divisive behavior to keep people apart.”
LL thinks that bestowing Thomas the title “civil rights leader” might be a tad strong. No disrespect to Thomas, but he’s hardly a household name, even in this city.
Thomas tells LL he’s flattered by the title, and thinks it is apt. “I think I am,” citing his vote in favor same-sex marriage last year—a tough vote, to be sure, for a councilmember from a more socially conservative ward.
But rest assured, Thomas says he’s not getting a big head: “I’m not even trying to remotely tell you that I can ever hold up to some of the legends and legacies that we’ve had.”