I didn't get to go to a tea party protest Wednesday. In addition to nursing sick children, I had to finish and mail our taxes, attend a funeral, take my son to the orthodontist, and teach piano lessons. But I was there in spirit, and I have appreciated reading articles and blog posts by those who attended and seeing photos and video coverage on television.
Unsurprisingly, however, the MSM are in general not covering the tea party protests accurately. Some outlets have portrayed the protesters as right-wing extremest fanatics and the protests as Republican propaganda. For an example, check out this post by Bi-Coloured-Python-Rock-Snake. The MSM just don't seem to get it. People are angry, and it's not just Republicans, but Democrats and Libertarians and Independents and others. And yes, they're angry at Barack Obama--he's the one in power right now--but the anger is directed not just at him. They realize the problem is systemic. But they also see him as making it infinitely worse. I think what bothers me most is how the protests are being played as only a tax revolt. I guess given that they happened on April 15 and hearken back to the revolutionaries who protested taxation without representation, I can't blame reporters for making that connection. But as Jane explains, this is about so much more than taxes. Ultimately, it's about freedom, and the fear that we have come to a place in our history where we are getting ready to lose the basic freedoms that once defined us as a nation.
One of the articles I read about the tea parties described a number of signs carried by the protesters. My favorite by far was this one:
OBAMA: One Big Awful Mistake, America.
The good news is that the ultimate power in this country still resides with the people. But it's up to them to use it. Maybe the sleeping giant is finally starting to wake up and we are seeing the beginnings of something that will lead to real hope and change rather than the narcotic version our politicians will keep pouring down our throats as long as we let them.