And by "speaking to" I mean, listening to and understanding their words.
(Versus preemptively plugging one's ears and reciting, "La-la-la-la-la! You're racist because all your political enemies say you are!")
Many 9-12/Tea Party members (myself included) are skeptical of/frustrated by FreedomWorks' attempts to co-opt the movement. Armey is an opportunist. Period.
You have been convinced, perhaps, by CNN, MSNBC & others that Tea Partiers are rallying behind a leader or organization like Armey. You have been mislead. (IF we are rallying behind anyone, it is the likes of Washington, Franklin, Madison, Paine, and Jefferson.)
In fact, I was recently listening to a talk-radio interview of a New York Tea Party organizer who is leading the charge against a very non-conservative NY GOP candidate there, endorsed by Newt Gingrich (another weasel attempting to co-opt the Tea Party movement for his own political favor) and she had nothing but contempt for both Gingrich and Armey.
If you are an Obama supporter, I can see how it may be difficult to understand the concept of separating a movement or cause or principle from a person or cult of personality... But I do not identify, nor have I met another Tea Party person, who bases the identity of their principles and concerns behind a individual person or personality, or leader. Yes, many of us do listen to and appreciate Glenn Beck, but he himself is calling for the distrust of parties (and even of himself, if he is ever found to be in contradiction of the constitutional principles of liberty.)
Glenn, like the tea party folks, is finding himself the object of GOP scorn. That tends to happen to people who call for others to desert the party and hang on to principles, as Glenn has been doing for at least the last year. If you only get your info from the White House press secretary, or from MSNBC (sorry, redundant), you won't learn of Beck's criticism of the GOP, but since he's put it on national television, radio, and in clear black & white in his last two NYT best-seller books, it's a fact that's hard to miss unless one has their head inserted in some sort of darkened orifice.
When you see Tea Party people applaud Perry, it is when he is speaking for States Rights (10th Amendment) and 2nd Amendment rights... they are applauding the principle, not the person. (incidentally, I don't support mandatory Gardasil vaccinations, and you'd be hard-pressed to find 9-12ers who do.)
When you see Tea Party/ 9-12ers applaud Ted Nugent, it is when he is speaking for gun rights (2nd Amendment).. they are applauding the principle, not the person. There are some who make the argument that flying the Confederate Flag is a symbol of support for States Rights as well, but since that message never gets heard over the more common connotation for what that flag symbolizes, I don't find it's use either appropriate or effective.
The ONLY expression or mention I've heard regarding RACE in connotation with Tea Parties is the disparaging media and Dem party giving their own versions of what our motives are.
I believe I've mentioned already the effort of the Idaho Tea Party and the Idaho 9-12 groups to support the Continental Congress 2009 project (http://cc2009.info). In the effort, each State was to conduct an election for delegate nominees on Oct 10th, with the top 3 delegates from each state and DC attending the Congress held in Illinois in November.
So all us hard-core, white-sheet-wearing tea party racists (as many would like you to believe) all got ourselves together to pick our best man, and which nominee got the most votes to represent us in the congress for Idaho?
Paul Venable... the only black nominee. (http://www.challism.com/cc2009/venable.htm) How dare we! We obviously selected him to represent ourselves based on some sort of deep-seated racism. Heh... Or not.
Actually, I've met Paul, and I understand why most of the people were impressed enough to vote for him, as did I.
Tea Partiers find themselves a target of the GOP in New York: http://taxdayteaparty.com/2009/10/its-war-…
You cannot find a majority of either current and former republicans who are backing the GOP right now.... http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_con…
The current administration and the rubber-stamp media would have you believe that the Tea Party or 9-12 movement is a manufactured minority party desperation move, but we're not interested in reclaiming Republican power... we're interested in reclaiming a constitutional democratic republic. They WANT you to stay focused on the Rep/Dem, Left/Right partisan sports-team rivalry...
To Hell with the 2-party monopoly, I just want my constitutional liberties.
In my experience, Tea Party people tend to be about 1/3 each of current/former republican conservatives, independents (with a trace of current/former democrats), and libertarians.
Perhaps you are confusing the Tea Party with the neocons? (who are neither new nor conservative.)
Among Tea Partiers, you'd hear criticism or outright condemnation of the Patriot Act. You'd hear some who were originally opposed to the Iraq War, and some who initially supported it but have seen it mismanaged and politicized to the point where withdrawal is argued as the only moral/humane option. Of course, there are still some who will continue to support the mission of the troops as a form of supporting the troops themselves.
Personally, when I heard Bush essentially saying, in the middle of a war, that nothing would be done to protect the borders, yet American grandmas would be strip-searched in the airport for a commuter flight, I knew The Powers That Be weren't taking seriously the same threat they were scaring everyone else with.
You certainly won't hear any Tea Party or 9-12 people defending the Bush liability waivers for vaccines, which were ushered in with fear and demagoguery following 9/11 along with the NSA, DHS, TSA, patriot act, etc.
I actually had never heard the term Thimerasol until I began associating with the more libertarian side of 9-12ers, many of whom see actions under the previous administration, such as passing laws authorizing mandatory vaccinations under the cover of a potential government-declared pandemic or martial law, as laying the foundation for current or future administrations to implement significant restraints on one's "Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
You may, for example, disagree with the concept of States Rights, but if you do, you are in opposition to the Constitution and its framers. But your disagreement with the ones who secured the liberties you enjoy today does not make me a racist.
You may disagree with the concept of gun rights, but if you do, you are again in opposition to the Constitution and its framers, who secured your liberties as a private militia using privately owned and operated cannons and other weapons of mass destruction (for their time) that put to shame arguments that the Founders would have never conceived of or approved of the private use of assault weapons. But again, your disagreement with those principles does not make me a racist.
So next time, before you move to characterize a movement in a certain way, you might actually try speaking to a member of that movement first.
TJ's characterization of Litster's petition is incorrect.
The language of the petition clearly does not call for an expensive special election, nor does it require a deadline for one, so long as it takes place ahead of any mayoral/council action on the trolly.
Either TJ Thompson is incapable of reading and comprehending the language of the petition, or he is being disingenuous about it's meaning...
Neither case being a shining endorsement of his adequacy for City Council.
There's something bulimic about the way you regurgitate links every time you've been exposed to a contrasting view.
Whoops! That would be Dr. Martin LuthEr King Jr., rather than Luthor. My Superman comic book reading days are bleeding through my historical and Constitutional reading... those were the days!
Diana, have you attended a tea party rally, a 9-12 event?
Republicans who percieve the current tea party momentum as resurgent Republicanism are in a dangerous state of denial. Dangerous to their political careers, that is.
If you actually spoke with tea party goers and listened to their concerns, you would find them equally disturbed by Bush's failure to perform his constitutional duty to defend our borders (in a time of war, no less) and Bush's absurd "abandonment of free-market principles to save the free market" as they are by Obama's accelerated expansion of government that is rolling out on the tracks that Bush laid for him. Many of them, (those who understand their constitutional rights properly) are as equally disturbed by the Patriot Act as the left were so vocal about under Bush (although oddly, their voices are not nearly so loud while Obama diligently reinforces it.) Many of them, like myself, find themselves outraged at a government who will strip-search citizen grandmas in the airport but can't bring themselves to put up a fence at the border for non-citizen whomevers.
Dick Armey's organization is only one part of a loose multi-organization coalition who put on the national rally.
Had you attended the Boise 9-12 / Tea Party rally with eyes that see and ears that hear, you would have heard that the action items the organizers wanted rally attenders to get behind were:
Contintental Congress 2009 (http://www.cc2009.us or http://www.givemeliberty.org) which is a non-partisan project to specifically bypass the two-party system in nominating and electing deligates who will attend a congress of citizens, patterned after the Continental Congresses held in 1774 and 1776 (the latter of which produced a document of some notable value which you may have heard) with the ultimate goal of producing recommended peaceable, lawful courses of action which constitutionally minded citizens may unite together in pursuing to achieve redress from the currently unresponsive (and, in many aspects, unconstitutional) government.
The GOOOH Project (http://www.goooh.com) or Get Out Of Our House! which is a non-partisan plan to bypass the current two-party election process to select and promote truly representative candidates of any political ideology (so long as they represent the constituents who selected them) with the ultimate goal of making a clean sweep of ALL of the 95% incumbent representatives in the House, regardless of party.
Those are the two major action items they encouraged at the Boise rally. Now, regardless of your personal opinion on the merits of these two projects, or their likelyhood of success... Do either of those projects REALLY sound like good 'ol boy network Republicanism to you?
Or is the threat of a movement to restore the country to it's Constitutional founding where equality of opportunity, not equality of results, somehow a threat to your own personal ideology, and so attacking the messenger is your only defense? Because siding with government enforced "equality" of outcome puts you on the side of the slave-master, when you get down to bare principles.
If that is the case, I can see why attacking the messenger is the more expedient course, rather than admitting to be a tyrant at heart. Using linguistic tyranny to brand as racist anyone who opposes the expansion of government and degradation of personal liberty is hypocrisy.
I, like the good Dr. Martin Luthor King Jr., dream of a day when men will be judged by the content of their character, not by the color of their skin. Using Obama's skin color as a wedge to attempt to discredit the opposition of policy is hypocrisy. It is the antithesis of King's dream.
I judge Obama by the means King dreamed of-- by the content of his character-- and find his character, as amplified by policies which reduce the liberty and property of the American individual, to be lacking.
I judge Obama by the means of which Obama himself requested in the debates: By those he surrounds himself with as advisors. He has successfully surrounded himself with self-avowed communists, radicals, socialists, anti-capitalists, men who have argued for the exact opposite principles espoused in the Declaration of Independence (that man's rights are essentially whatever the current government deems the people may have) or that the Constitution doesn't explicitly give citizens the right to reproduce.
Skin color? Race? What rediculously, absurdly, laughably shallow and insignificant factors in comparison to the above. If I didn't know that the real object of the race-baiters is in attempting to discredit the messenger... If I didn't know that they used this approach because they lack the balls to confont the real message and openly ally themselves with government oppression of life and liberty... If I didn't know that, frankly I would be embarassed on their behalf for limping in with such a weak-minded absurdity like the race card.
P.S. If the author wishes to do his own actual journalism, rather than scraping up the words of Kos and Huffington unexamined, he might consider taking in the CSPAN coverage of the national rally, in which he will see speeches by multiple black and latino speakers, as well as white, to a multi-racial crowd which filled the same length of ground as the 2009 inauguration.
Will the author let his own eyes see and report the truth, or will he swallow what is pre-chewed and half-digested for him by the likes of Huffington, MSNBC and the Washington Compost?
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