Tea Parties

May 1, 2009

Editor’s Note: This blog was written prior to the Tax Day Tea Parties that took place all over the nation on April 15, 2009.  However, as the Tea Party movement continues and more tea parties are being planned for the near future, the thoughts of this blog are just a true today as they were prior to April 15, 2009.

Across the country, there are hundreds of Tea Parties being held this April 15th.  These Tea Parties are being held for a variety of reasons, many of which can be found at: http://taxdayteaparty.com.

The original Boston Tea Party was held in Boston Harbor in 1773 predominantly to protest the British Government’s exorbitant taxation on Tea, which the colonists had to buy from Great Britain, but it was a sign of larger things, including, but not limited to violation of the colonists’ right to be taxed by their own elected representatives.

In our current political situation, many people are angered because our government has routinely and continually disregarded what many people believe to be common sense decisions by obligating our national budget for projects and actions that we do not believe in, and where no amount of “creative accounting” can come up with money to pay for, without obligating our children and grand-children for humongous debts. 

Other people are angered and frustrated by politicians who seem to want to be politicians because of the power inherent in the position, although I think a greater number of our current crop of politicians want to be congressmen because of the awesome benefits, including but not limited to, medical care, retirement benefits, and the fact that they are members of a very select group of people – out of 300 million citizens, there are only 435 representatives and 100 senators in the entire country.

Many advocates of the Tea Parties suggest taking the day off – the problem for most of us is that we all have jobs – you know, someone has to work to pay for all these things the government is promising to everyone.

Over the past few weeks, I have heard a variety of suggestions about how to conduct one’s self at these Tea Parties.  I have to be honest – I haven’t heard anything from any of the mainstream media, but I don’t watch much of the “big 3 news channels” because I have become tired of their continual leftward-leaning portrayal of everything from the weather to traffic to immigration to the Global War on Terror (yes, I know that it is now called something else, but “a rose by any other name, would still smell as sweet”, so I will continue to call it what it is).

As angered and frustrated as many of us are, I think we need to be careful about how we show our anger and our frustration.  There are rumors of groups of far-left liberals planning to crash the various parties in an effort to portray conservatives as far right (which we are), as illogical (which we aren’t), as uncaring (which we aren’t), and as out-of-touch (this is open to debate). 

In all of this, I think that conservatives’ biggest issue is that we don’t talk about what we want – we expect that other people will see our side, based purely on logic and common sense, not realizing that many people deal with politics from a much more “emotional” aspect – now I may be blowing smoke here, but I haven’t seen a whole lot of evidence to refute my beliefs.

Personally, I am going to the Tea Party in West Palm Beach, FL, to meet other people who are as frustrated as I am, and to show by my presence that I am angered and frustrated by my government’s refusal to look at the beliefs and knowledge of a large part of the country’s population.  I am not taking a sign.  I am not wearing a t-shirt with a logo about my lack of faith in my government. 

If asked why I am there, I will say “I want to show our elected officials that I am frustrated that they are not listening to me and to the hundreds of thousands of people nation-wide who believe as I do.”  I will continue with “I believe that people, and especially politicians, who do not know their history doom the entire country to repeat it – none of the situations we are currently facing are new – they have all been dealt with in the past, and from history we know what works and what doesn’t.  As long as we keep doing the same wrong things, we will continue to get the wrong results.”

 I might also add if it seems appropriate that I believe that each and every one of us has a God-given right to “… life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…”, but that comes with a couple caveats.  The first is that no one is guaranteed the right to be happy, only the right to pursue happiness.  The second is that someone else’s life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness MUST end when it starts infringing on my right to the same, and vice versa.

Happy Tea Party to everyone!

Charles Grett

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