The Status of the Tea Party- Stateside and Worldwide (!) – Part 2

800px-Tea_Party_-_Pennsylvania_AvenueI thought I should mention a few more things about the Tea Party, apart from the fact that it is not dying out.

First, there is the extremist issue. Despite some entities within the United States Government’s (e.g. Homeland Security, the United States Military Academy) considering the Tea Party to be an extremist movement, the fact is, it is not. It is a political movement like any other in the history of the United States. The Tea Party Movement is not a terrorist group (e.g. a bunch of Timothy McVeigh wannabes). And if the government does consider the Tea Party to be extremist, then how come none of its members have been arrested for treason?

It should be noted that people have joined the movement not because of Obama’s race, but because of his socialist agenda. Janeane Garofalo accused the Tea Party of being racist, even though she produced no evidence to back up her claim. She did point out one thing: why didn’t the Tea Party emerge during the Bush Administration? My answer would be that although Bush may have been unpopular even among conservatives, the Clinton Era was the best time for the Tea Party to emerge, given Clinton’s disdain for the Constitution (e.g. the Second Amendment) and his disregard for national security (which paved the way for 9/11).

Next, there is the corporate lobby issue. It has recently been pointed out that the Tea Party was not founded by the Koch Brothers or the tobacco companies, but by American citizens who were concerned for their country’s future. However, its origins are still somewhat disputed. Some credit Ron Paul’s 2008 presidential campaign as the beginning of the Tea Party Movement. Others credit Treavor Leach and the Young Americans for Liberty for having a Tea Party protest in New York State in January 2009. Still others credit Keli Carender, on the grounds that she founded the first Tea Party in February 2009. But regardless of its origins, one thing is clear: the Tea Party Movement is not a proxy of Corporate America.

Then there is the global issue. As I mentioned last week, Tea Parties have sprung up in other countries. Some of them (e.g. Australia, New Zealand, Italy) are politically conservative in nature, while others (e.g. Russia, Israel) are more libertarian. But regardless of their nature, they stand for the three main principles of the Tea Party Movement here in America: limited government, fiscal responsibility, and free markets.

Also, if the Tea Party here in America is considered to be racist or extremist, then wouldn’t the Tea Parties in other countries also face such accusations? Apparently the governments of those nations don’t view them as racist or extremist, because if they did, then they would have shut down those Tea Parties.

Thus, the Tea Party Movement is not going away. In fact, it is growing.

Image: Protesters walking down Pennsylvania Avenue during the Taxpayer March on Washington; date: 12 September 2009; source: originally posted to Flickr as 072; author: Patriot Room; Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

About the author: Andrew Linn

Andrew Linn is a member of the Owensboro Tea Party and a former Field Representative for the Media Research Center. An ex-Democrat, he became a Republican one week after the 2008 Presidential Election. He has an M.A. in history from the University of Louisville, where he became a member of the Phi Alpha Theta historical honors society. He has also contributed to examiner.com and Right Impulse Media.

View all articles by Andrew Linn

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