The animals bellow and scurry about the barnyard for no apparent reason. Farmhands shake their heads and laugh. Hours later, they join the panic as a force five tornado bears down upon the farm.
American Tea partiers bellow and scurry about the country for no apparent reason. The sophisticated shake their heads and laugh. Years later, will they join the panic as the force of unfettered government bears down upon every aspect of their lives?
Some prefer not to leave such questions to chance.
There’s much to be said for the animalian ability to detect threats long before they are apparent to others. By some fluke of nature, Americans—some Americans—have always demonstrated a similar sixth sense where their liberty is concerned.
Fresh off the boat from England, we were not a little awestruck as we experienced this phenomenon firsthand at our first ever Tea Party in Madison, Wisconsin this past Thursday, April 15.
First impressions were myriad but chief among them was the atmosphere of the event, more church social than protest: Mums and Dads pushing strollers; grandmums and granddads pushing walkers, and no one pushing methamphetamines; words most commonly heard were “hello”, “excuse me”, and polite solicitations to support this candidate or that, oppose this bit of asinine legislation or that; other than the occasional “HELL NO” we heard not a single foul word, detected no presence of alcohol, and saw not one piece of litter; there was no evidence of racism (the only sign even addressing the issue paraphrased Dr. King, “It’s not the color of his skin. It’s the content of his policies.” Brilliant!); and though motivated by anger, there was nothing seen or felt that could be identified as hatred…
… just ask the “Tea Party crashers” who attended.
Despite their best efforts, the Lefty infiltrators provoked little but amusement amongst the some 10 to 12,000 assembled. Personally we saw two groups attempting provocation. The first comprised four or five sumptuous vixens carrying signs from Planned Parenthood, one of which read, “Keep Your Tea Bags Off of My Body.” (By the looks of her, she’d had quite a few there already.) They made their way through the crowd, their boy-toy lackey in tow video taping every second in the hopes that some frothing, Jesus-soaked right-winger would rip the sign from their hands and beat them to the ground with it, just in time for the five o’clock news. No such luck. A few heckles, a number of disapproving glances, nothing more. They left, unassaulted and disappointed.
The second group bore signs supporting Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wisconsin.) Again, disinterest and amusement was the general reaction. As they withdrew from the crowd, however, a young male Feingold supporter – festooned in face piercings and heavy leather jacket (it was 75 degrees) – attempted to provoke an elderly and much larger man than he into fisticuffs. The man smiled and waved the young agitator onward toward the back of the rally and back home to his bong. We caught a glimpse of this young man; his eyes, pale blue and small, burning with rage and contempt. At who or what we wondered? What exactly about this gathering did he find so noxious and outrageous?
There were no other infiltrations that we detected other than a truck which drove round the perimeter of the State Capitol where the event took place, honking its horn incessantly. One of the event speakers--a black man by Jiminy!-- Pastor David King, referenced the truck and pointed out that it bore a sign reading, I am my brother’s keeper.
“They don’t want to be their brother’s keeper,” he declared. “They want to be their brother’s master.”
Progressivism in sum. The crowd roared.
You would not and will not experience anything like these Tea Parties in Europe or England, or anywhere else in the world. One-off protests, demonstrations, and riots in response to offenses of the state, real or perceived, are not uncommon. But a civil, sustained, growing movement like this requires more than outrage, it requires love. A love you will find only in America.
Greater than the Tea Partiers’ anger over stimulus legislation, health care reform, a legion of czars, the castration of American defenses etc. being jammed down the national throat, with the very real threat of more to come, is their love of liberty, limited government, and economic freedom. The same love that moved Americans 234 years ago to rally around a Declaration that angrily denounced a tone-deaf king, but far more importantly, articulated a radical love of life and principles worth fighting and dying for.
This is what fuels the Tea Party movement. This is what characterizes their rallies. This is what heightens their senses so. And this is what President Obama and other Democrat officials scoff at to their own peril.