Pissed Off Republicans And The Audacity Of The Tea Party
I bet you never thought you’d see the day when protesting was not only encouraged, but downright cool with conservatives and Republicans.
The more progressive the Tea Party movement appears to be, the more steam it will pick up along the way. And if you’re anything like me, you’ve probably asked yourself more than once, what exactly does the Tea Party stand for? Is it a unified, organized party? At first glance, it is neither, but it is becoming a small force to be recognized. I say this because the movement has captured the attention of the entire country. If you count the times that international reporters have covered events and protests that Sarah Palin speaks at then you can adequately say the entire world is aware of the existence of the Tea Party. Every time they handsomely pay Mrs. Palin to speak at an event on their behalf, people listen, if not in outright agreement then for the sake of criticism and critique. She’s the quintessentialposter child for the Tea Party movement whether or not they continue to deny and downplay the fact that they receive major backing from the Republican party. Even more odd is the fact that most tea baggers do not believe Sarah Palin is fit to be president. She’s good enough to draw their crowds and incite donations, but when it comes to presidential posturing forget about it.
Since you can’t seduce your own people, who exactly makes up the bulk of the Tea Party? This one is easy. Pissed off conservatives, disgruntled Republicans, hapless liberals and Democrats and a curious contingent of Libertarians who, for the most part, question Republican inclusion since their politics are at complete odds with each other. The remainder can be considered Independent simply because they align with no particular party until it comes time to vote. The Party is not official but it is unofficially growing by the day. The angry, vocal minority that makes up the movement has become quite effective at gaining not only political exposure, but backing and legitimacy.
The movement began with fierce opposition to health care reform and the stimulus packages passed first by President Bush and later on by President Obama. Keep in mind that former President Bush is still Republican. Republicans, who are against everything the Obama administrations stands for, retracted their support of a bill they helped create. They began to see the Tea Party as an opportunity that comes around only about thrice in a lifetime. The odds that this supposed “grass roots” movement would catch on among the anti-protesting (until recently) conservatives and Republicans paid off BIG time.
The Tea Party is said to be opposed to big government, raising taxes, and fiscal irresponsibility. They claim to be the answer to everything that’s wrong with the two most powerful political parties in America. It was established on April 15, 2009, also known as the last day to file taxes in America, and it goes hand in hand with the name Tea which equates to “Taxed Enough Already”.
There has been talk of revolution and taking the country back from the radical, Kenyan born, socialist president while waving signs that contain underlying threats of violence and veiled sectarianism.
There has been talk of mistrusting the government, but an eagerness to allow career politicians to not only speak at functions, but to endorse the movement as being in line with conservative ideas.
They’re against high taxes, welfare (corporate and otherwise), universal health care and stimulus packages, but they’re not against tax breaks for the wealthy just because they’re wealthy nor are they against leaving Wall Street unregulated.
Their marches and protests are organized by organizations such as FreedomWorks, a conservative non-profit organization, who, according to Wikipedia,“trains volunteer activists and wages campaigns to encourage them to mobilize, engage fellow citizens, and influence their political representatives.”
The Chairman of FreedomWorks is none other than Richard “Dick” Armey, a former US Representative and House Majority Leader. He’s also Republican and as conservative as they come. No longer do I believe the Tea Party is grass roots.
What I do know is that 18% of Americans identify with the Tea Party. Of that figure, most members are reportedly white married men over the age of 45. They’re also overwhelmingly Republican.