Tea Party heroes deserve our thanks — not abuse

Jay Ambrose
Chicago Sun-Times
2/27/2010

Like a hero rescuing a damsel tied up and lying on the railroad tracks as a train approaches, the Tea Party movement has been trying to save America from runaway leftism. But this hero, instead of being applauded, is taking it on the chin from critics who will invent any calumny and revise any truth to make their case.

The movement consists of ignoramuses, it’s said. It’s a tool of the Republican Party, some contend. Comedian Bill Maher, who thinks all Americans are stupid, calls it a cult. Its lineage is traced by a Prospect magazine article to Joe McCarthy and George Wallace. Some critics point to kooks in the party and others to haters, and at the end of the day, we are all left to shudder in fear of this dreadful thing.

First, of course, it’s true that any movement with millions of followers will have some oddballs and worse in the mix. But anyone who has ventured to a rally or paid close attention to the speeches knows the Tea Party fringe does not come close to summing up the whole, that there is nothing racist in its rhetoric or accusatory in a McCarthy style.

A CNN poll tells us those involved are middle class, mostly middle aged or beyond and that 75 percent are college-educated. These are not uninformed citizens in pursuit of dingbat policies, but people mostly worried about a killer debt, President Obama’s spendathon tactics to resolve the recession and a health plan that would be unaffordable while giving us a society ever more run by Big Brother in D.C.

The article continues at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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