Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Tea Party

Those who know me know that I have no respect for the vast majority of Tea Baggers. I don't even call them Tea Party members. I have though, not always expressed my reasons for that disdain well. I found this paragraph in Digby's Blog Hullabloo and it expresses my feelings as well as anything I have seen.

I still can't wrap my mind around the fact that tea partiers are having fits over a health care plan which they claim is a usurpation of our constitutional rights, but stripping Americans of their citizenship when someone suspects them of a crime is worth considering. Torture and indefinite imprisonment are perfectly in keeping with our founding principles but asking people to fill out a census form is Big Brother in action. Profiling anyone who some beat cop thinks might not be a citizen is a-ok, but making it difficult for terrorist suspects to buy a gun is an assault on the constitution. What the hell?

Thanks to Digby for this.


Smaktakula said...

Honestly, I'm surprised at the degree of animus some people feel toward the Tea Party movement. I'm not a Tea Partier, but I am sympathetic to many of their small-government ideas (the idea to strip people of their citizenship is heinous and unAmerican; you'll get no argument from me on that!).

It's troubling that so many on the left (which is no longer the same thing as liberal) choose not to debate the tea party movement on their ideas, but by calling them stupid or racist with no or at best anecdotal evidence.

I believe it is this condecending attitude, along with vile, immature terms like "Tea Baggers" (by equating the sexual practice of Tea-Bagging with something negative, people are being anti-homosexual or simply anti-sex) that give this movement strength. I could not bring myself to vote for Sarah Palin. However, many people I love and respect could, and to hear them called stupid and racist does the other side no favors.

I do want to say that, with the exception of the term "Tea Baggers," I don't feel that you use this forum to engage in those kinds of tactics--you are typically very even handed. However, not everybody is.

Uncle Walt said...

I am unabashedly liberal on almost ever issue (my support of nuclear power being one significant exception), but I do strive for evenhandedness, if not balance. I love a good debate where people of differing opinions can present and defend their opinions without being attacked, only disagreed with.

And that is why the I find the Tea Party movement to be so almost offensive. The limited discusions I have had with Tea Partiers display a disheartening degree of almost deliberate ignorance of the issues they claim to feel so strongly about. I usually adress my opponents respectfully but I deliberately use Tea Baggers when discussing this group because of their almost beligerent ignorance.

I have been called a Socialist and a Communist by baggers who couldn't define either and certainly had no concept of the difference between the terms.

40% or so of those who self identify with the Tea Party movement believe our President was born in Kenya.

98% of them didn't realize that their taxes went down last year.

In the health care debate I got told again and again that no body knew what was in the bill despite the fact that it had passed the Senate 3 months before it was brought to the House. Thats actually plenty of time for them to read the entire bill, but instead they claim nobody knew what was in the bill.

Honest open debate is critical to a successful democracy, and for all the baggers noise and anger and silly signs, I have seen no evidence that they are in any way interested in honest or open debates. They just want to vent their spleens in public.

That is why my attitude towards them is so condensending. Thats why I use term Tea Baggers. I suspect that many of them don't even know they are being offended with I use that term.

And its that attidude in the Tea Party movement that I think Digby captured so perfectly.

Thanks for your comment. Please feel free to make more.