The President of the United States openly insulted a large group of citizens a few days ago. He smugly said, on national television, that the Tea Party rallies “amused” him, and that he was surprised the people concerned about taxes were not actually thanking him.
I can't recall ever before hearing a US President publicly taunt citizen activists. Yet beyond the infuriating disrespect, the fact the President took time to ridicule Tea Party folks shows he is worried. Very worried.
A recent Gallup poll reports 28% of the people in the U.S. support the Tea Party movement, a number which is growing fast. This poll also shows that, contrary to media stereotyping, Tea Party attendees have a higher than average level of both education and income, they are working folks, and almost as many call themselves Independents (43%) as claim to be Republicans (49%), with a smaller portion declaring Democrat (8%). It’s a mixed bag of political parties but there are important shared beliefs: Less government spending, more individual accountability and liberty.
Tea Party people are in love with this country! It’s a fact that Mr. Obama will not herald, but I just finished watching the video of last week’s North Idaho Tea Party at the Greyhound Park, and the crowd’s passion for Freedom, the Constitution and the Rule of Law came through loud and clear. (I missed the event because I injured my back but am mending well now.)
It's government spending that is a big problem for Tea Party members, spending that started with the previous administration(s) and is now unsustainable. We are smart enough to know that massive taxes are on their way, like a mushroom cloud on the horizon, even if minor cuts have been made recently. President Obama has currently approved more than 670 Billion dollars in new taxes, due to go into effect over the next ten years. And more are on the way. Of those approved, 14 separate taxes break his middle class promise to never increase their taxes, “Not even a single dime”.
The attendance at the North Idaho Tea Party was tremendous. Almost 3000 people crammed into the Greyhound Park. The start of the rally was delayed because the keynote speaker was caught in an enormous traffic jam on the freeway, caused a mile long string of cars waiting to exit and make their way to the rally. The number of folks attending this time was double the highest previous total!
Terrorists? Racists? Haters? Wackos? Hardly. These are some of the nicest people you'll ever meet. And they embraced keynote speaker Mason Weaver with open arms, hopeful hearts and many standing ovations. Mason is a black conservative man with a fascinating life story which includes military service, a devastating injury, his own racist anger against white people, awareness, redemption, and dedication to the rights of ALL Americans. He’s now running for Congress from San Diego. There were no issues of who’s black or who’s white, who’s old or who’s young, who’s rich or who’s poor, at this Tea Party rally. There were only passionate Americans sharing their concerns about the direction of this country. Certainly not a group or movement our President should be mocking.
It is not just our right to have these meetings and rallies, people, it is our DUTY as citizens to stand up for the values upon which this country was founded and protect our freedoms. I was just talking with our auto mechanic today, a successful businessman who has built and expanded his operation, in spite of the tight economy. He told me that almost everyone he talks with, all day long, is upset about our national leadership. His wisdom came through when he said, “We will take back our country because we, the hard-working, regular folks of this country, understand we can make a difference.” WE, the people, already are making a difference! We obviously have the attention of the President and Congress. Let’s pass the word: We can do this. Keep the faith.