It started, oddly enough, with a now former voiceover spokesman for GEICO Insurance, Lance Baxter, who left a disparaging voicemail message for FreedomWorks, the PAC responsible for much of the albeit loose organization behind the Tea Party movement. While I’m sure his voice sounded buttery smooth, what he had to say wasn’t exceptionally nice, as he characterized members of the movement as mentally challenged and wondered aloud what would happen if one of the Tea Partiers turned to violence.
Then, one of the folks behind FreedomWorks posted Baxter’s telephone number online and encouraged people to call. Baxter’s phone inevitably rang off the hook, and from the looks of the video below, he was shocked–SHOCKED!–by the venom and vitriol he heard from angry Tea Partiers on the other end of the line. See for yourself:
Well, Baxter was fired from his gig at GEICO, and after word got out about his termination, a number of those on the left who supported Baxter’s position called and e-mailed FreedomWorks. Courtesy of Tabitha Hale over at Right Wing News, we can now hear a smattering of those voicemail messages.
Ahhh … the ever-so-tolerant left.
***WARNING: Extremely foul language.***
I don’t know about you, but I’ve grown pretty darned tired of the blind assertion that those of us on the political right in this nation are somehow racist, violent xenophones simply because we believe in the merits of a limited federal government, and the actual enforcement of our own laws where they apply.
So much attention was given to the angry messages received by Congressman Bart Stupak in the days and weeks leading up to the health care reform vote. Stupak’s wife had to disconnect the telephone. Authorities were apprised of personal threats made. Well, the part that the media never reminds us about is that, up until a few hours before the vote took place, Stupak was taking a stand AGAINST health care reform — so the voicemail messages and threats and everything else came from people on the left who felt as though he had abandoned the Democratic Party and their agenda of populist authoritarianism. It’s simply a matter of timing.
For the media, however, it doesn’t matter. Look, for example, at the situation down in Arizona, where the governor has just signed into law a measure which will allow for the enforcement of immigration laws. Illegal immigrants and the open borders crowd have taken to the streets, throwing rocks and bottles at law enforcement officials and harassing legislators to the point where armed escort has been needed.
And yet, to the media, these are people whose cause should evoke emotion. While the Tea Party movement, however, is apparently filled with ne’er-do-wells. But the movement I’ve been seeing all along, and the rally I saw on April 15 in Philadelphia, looked decidedly different.
Looking out at the crowd today, I tried to once again view the world from a liberal’s eyes. I looked and looked for racists, but found none. I looked and looked for bigots, but found none. I searched for xenophobes and homophobes and other -phobes, but my search was done in vain.
I came up empty because the Tea Party movement is not about race, because it is not about religion, or gender, or nationality, or sexual orientation. Certainly, the 300 people who made up today’s crowd in Love Park surely would not agree with each other on an issue-by-issue basis, but that’s the beauty of the movement. The Tea Party movement is about the core principles at the heart of the core principles. It’s not about the superficial issues which divide us, it’s about the proper size, scope, role and function of the American federal government as envisioned by those great but imperfect men who came together and created a nation 222 years ago and a mere ten blocks away.
The Tea Party movement is about whether it’s right for the federal government to situate itself between a patient and his doctor. It’s about whether it’s right for the government to retain the authority to take over a private corporation because that organization is somehow deemed a “systemic risk” and “too big to fail.” It’s about more than Nancy Pelosi, more than Harry Reid, and more than Barack Obama.
As good as the last few months of this year may be, as much as I firmly believe that we are going to see an electoral bloodbath in November, getting there will not be easy. As far as the crowd in Love Park is concerned, those who stand against them will do everything in their power to portray our movement as somehow abnormal. They will infiltrate our crowds. They will attempt to distract from our message. They will actively work to make us look like racists, bigots, xenophobes and homophobes. My question to those people is: if we’re such a bunch of racists, bigots, xenophobes and homophobes, why do they need to infiltrate our crowds to portray us as such?
Regardless, those people who were gathered today in Love Park and across the country cannot let them. We need to remember why we’re here. We need to police ourselves. We need to show the rest of America, those people still home and watching a movement unfold on television, that you and I are no different than they are. We’re black, we’re white, we’re gay, we’re straight, we’re rich, we’re poor. Like them, we want to be free to live our lives, to run our businesses, to raise our families. Like them, we know that we cannot spend beyond our means. Like them, we want more than anything else for our children to inherit more freedom, more potential, more opportunity and a better way of life than we enjoyed ourselves.
I’m tired of it. Sure, we’re frustrated. Sure, we’re angry. But for the most part, we have a different way of showing it. Look at the two videos above. Considering the second one, really listen to the tone, to the anger, to the inability of some to reach the right words through all of the seething hatred. The difference is incredible, especially considering that the first video is held up as a glowing example of the anger and intolerance on the right.
Show this to everyone you know, because I’m just getting tired of pointing out the obvious all the time. Let’s set the record straight, already.