I recently wrote a column for a friend’s website.
I was happy to do it, and while writing it, I thought back to my first Tea Party event. It occurred in the spring of 2009 at Westlake Plaza, in Downtown Seattle. The event was organized by one of the Tea Party’s founders, Keli Carender.
My wife and I went together, two neophyte demonstrators feeling like triangular pegs trying to fit into hexagonal holes. The first person we met, as we settled on a bench, was another “triangle,” real estate agent. The fifties-something woman told us it was also her first ever political event. She said she just had to come. Like us, she felt so strongly about what was happening to our government in Washington D.C. under President Obama, and the Democratic Congress, ramming colossal, nation-altering legislation down America’s throat, as it turns out, largely by deceit.
The left has been remarkably effective in smearing the “Tea Party,” which is quite a feat when you consider there is no single, “Tea Party.” The Tea Party is essentially a movement made up of like-minded people who are tired of big government nanny-statism and all the nonsense it excretes. The left, deftly applying Saul Alinsky tactics, has succeeded, certainly in the mainstream media, but sadly, also within some quarters of the Republican Party, in demonizing the Tea Party(ies).
If one claims membership in a Tea Party organization, or the Tea Party at large, one is attacked as racist, misogynistic, and bigoted in every shape, manner and conception. One doesn’t simply hold a differing opinion. One is not merely an opponent with whom the left can debate. One is an evil enemy that the left needs to destroy.
As John Carlson said on his KVI 570, Seattle, morning radio show today: “The right thinks the left is wrong, but the left thinks the right are bad people.” This sums up the state of political affairs quite accurately.
So, after all of the vicious lies directed from left to right, why do I still proudly consider myself a member of the Tea Party movement? Because, the left does not define me. I am defined by how I live my life every day and how I treat the people I deal with.
When I hear someone like Senate Leader Harry Reid, or House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, or even worse, President Barak Obama so coldly disparage the so-called Tea Party with callous, condescending and even crude terms, I cringe for our country. For the party that called for civility in politics, many Democrats sure have a peculiar, and malicious, way of showing it. “Teabagger?” This, obscene invective directed at fellow American citizens, whom he supposedly represents, from a U.S. president?
One true difference between the left of today and that of even ten or fifteen years ago, is that, even during President Clinton’s administration, even with his obvious flaws, I never felt like I was not welcome in the room. Today’s Democrats leave me feeling, as a fellow American citizen, that not only am I not welcome in the room, I’m not welcome to stand in the hallway.