To the Tea Party:

I feel the need to follow up the original post with a clarification for those of you of the Tea Party inclination who found a lot of the stereotypes contained therein offensive or disheartening, at the least. The original post, “We are not the Tea Party; We are the Free Party,” was written for a very specific audience with a specific purpose and was not directed at the Tea Party in any way. I was speaking to the 20-40 something young professionals who are overeducated and cynical or naive enough to buy into or at least relate to the stereotypes of both the Republican Party and the Democrat Party described below. My purpose was to address their disillusionment with both political parties, identify the common values they generally share which are consistent with the core values of the Republican party, and emphasize that it is possible for us to mobilize and carry out a reformation of sorts as the Tea Party did with the result of uniting behind a Republican candidate in the next election.

When I referred to the Republican Party as holding ideals that are “bigoted, racist, sexist,” etc, I was speaking to the stereotypes perpetuated by the liberal news media platforms. Unfortunately, these stereotypes really have taken hold in the perspectives of a lot of my peers. I am not saying that this is right or that I think this way, but I am saying that this is a major problem that must be addressed to motivate this group of people to vote Republican in the future.

Please note that when I described this stereotype of the Republican Party, I was not referring to the Tea Party. The reference to the Tea Party in the title of the piece and in the final paragraph is meant to cite the Tea Party as an example of a group of people who were less than thrilled with what they were getting from the Republican Party and who therefore started and continue to maintain a movement of successful reform within the GOP. I am holding the Tea Party up as an example that such reform and rebranding can be successfully carried out.

You may ask why I do not urge my peers to join the Tea Party or other less well known libertarian or independent movements. I do not because the unfortunate stereotypes of the GOP have already stigmatized the Tea Party amongst this group of people, and I don’t have the idealism or energy to believe that it would be possible to pull a large enough chunk of Democrat or Republican leaning members of my peer group over to the libertarians to do anything other than take away important votes from a Republican candidate in 2016. I do think that the national news media political pundits have painted the Tea Party as extremists or as another version of the same negatively stereotyped Republican right. Although I do not hold that perspective, the audience I am trying to reach in the original post unfortunately does buy into this stereotype, mainly because they believe what they hear from the talking heads. The purpose of this blog is not to challenge these stereotyped perspectives but to bypass them entirely with the same ultimate goal.

I wrote this piece in direct reaction to my dismay with the results of the election on Tuesday night. I could not understand how so many of my peers could vote for Obama in the name of certain social issues when a semi-socialist Democrat administration would likely mean possible economic collapse or at least the continued growth of the federal government, something which I believe threatens the protection of those very “rights” with which they are so concerned.

Rather than exhausting myself and dying early from the stress of trying to convince my peers that the Tea Party is a cause they should join, I think the best way to motivate this group to the same ultimate end is to emulate the Tea Party’s successful model of reinventing and rebranding a type of Republican ideology that appeals to the more socially  liberal and economically conservative values of this group of people. There are a lot of ways to accomplish the same thing, and I think this is the best way to really cut to the heart of the matter with my peers.

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13 thoughts on “To the Tea Party:

  1. Does your blog have a contact page? I’m having problems locating it but, I’d like to shoot you an email. I’ve got some ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great blog and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.

  2. online timer says:

    I needed to thank you for this wonderful read!! I absolutely enjoyed every bit
    of it. I have you book marked to look at new things you post…

  3. Russell says:

    If a Republican politician has a history of even slight compromise on abortion, leniency toward Mexican immigrants, openness to a discussion on civil unions, enthusiasm for social policies that benefit inner city blacks, etc. that politician will be murdered by those in the news media who have taken it upon themselves to represent the conservative movement. As a result Republican candidates must take extreme stands on social issues to get elected. This leaves the party in a death spiral because each of these issues very much influences a large and growing voting block.
    >
    > We have effectively alienated the young, the socially liberal, the African American, the Latin American, and many females. You will argue this but whatever the argument the numbers tell the truth. The party is the victim of the leftist as well as the right leaning media. Each perpetuates the stereotypes to which this blogger refers. This affects votes. Is there any basis for these stereotypes?
    >
    > It is the responsibility of our elected officials to represent ALL Americans. It is time for the Republican party to explain to the inner city blacks exactly how their economic policies can help them. Is it even on our minds and in our discussions? If we can turn the economy around will we then use our prosperity to help educate their children? Or does this just mean bigger yachts for wall street bankers and bigger homes and SUV’s for our suburban constituents? And will you please explain to a poor single inner city mother how reducing taxes on extremely rich people will help her child escape their oppressive poverty. It might, but the message doesn’t make sense to the voter and the talking heads on both sides perpetuate this. If you were in this setting wouldn’t the message that Obama is going to give you something be more appealing than complete disinterest? Does the Republican party represent a poor single black inner city mother of three? Or do we just judge her? We need to represent her and we need to communicate to her how we can help. She votes.
    >
    > Republican be honest – don’t you think these inner city folks just need to work harder? Aren’t they just a bunch of Acorn enthusiasts? Shouldn’t we just ship these criminal Mexicans out of the country? That is my understanding from Fox News. What is the Republican message to these people? Do we even care? Does our party represent them at all? From what I see on MSNBC AND Fox nothing is being said to encourage the African American and urban vote and this holds true for the young, Latino, gay, female, and others. I look at the voter map of blue and red. Who brainwashed us that Republicans don’t care about the blue and should not directly address their issues? Why do we give up those votes? Are the stereotypes accurate?
    >
    > I am an old white guy and it is easy for me to vote Republican but this is a government for the people and by the people and the PEOPLE are no longer a bunch of old white guys. Let’s represent them and address their issues. All people groups will be helped by strong conservative fiscal policy but extreme social policy and rhetoric will prevent us from ever having the opportunity.
    >
    > I think this blogger is onto something.

  4. I also was aware that most of my friends bought into very ugly false stereotypes about Republicans. There’s a mindset of tee-hee lets gang-up on politician-X or company-Y because they don’t march in line to my narrow beliefs about (choose one):gay marriage, abortion, birth control. Then people are eager to swoop down on the next hapless Republican voter. It’s ugly and very effective. No one paints all Democrats with the ugly and misguided beliefs of some of their candidates (I feel like even mentioning names or instances would brand me a racist as a means to dismiss me).

    My vote had to do with the economy and national security. Obama is clueless and doesn’t understand numbers. We haven’t had a budget in years, the labor participation rate is abysmal and the debt is larger than the GDP. Meanwhile, a lot of people around the world hate us and advocate a life that the Western world left behind hundreds of years ago. It’s a life that would literally destroy gays and “lady parts.” We have sought to appease and didn’t even bother to explain that freedom of speech is something we never gave up for the government to control.

    I agree that it is important to counteract the ugly stereotypes in order to face the challenges we face as a free society.

  5. doit2000 says:

    The face of the GOP to most independents and Democrats is a ranting pro-lifer who will start a war on abortion that will be as bad or worse than the war on drugs.

    This group is a minority in the GOP, but manages to shout down everyone else.

    I welcome your blog and hope it attracts a lot of readers.

    I think it is time to break the two party monopoly, and there is a way to do it. When a candidate like Gary Johnson can’t get a hearing in GOP primaries, something is very wrong.

    It is time to push for preferential voting like the Australians use. Check this wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

  6. jabbathetutt says:

    So, the GOP is irrevocably tarred with being racist, sexist and bigoted among your generation, even though admittedly it is not. Your answer “toss it overboard”.

    The Tea Party is also smeared with being racist, sexist and bigoted among your generation. Your answer “start the Free Party”.

    What makes you think that the Free Party won’t been smeared the same way? Then what?

    Blacks had certain stereotypes in the past: lazy, shiftless, criminal, dirty, like Joe Biden said about Barack Obama that he was “clean and articulate”. What happened, there’s been a concerted campaign to attack those attitudes as wrong stereotypes. I guess, you answer back in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s would have been “skin lightener”.

    You’re naive, sir.

    • this is just how i see it, jabba. given the way things are going, the only alternative see is to lie down and die and let it all keep going down the tubes, and i’d rather not do that if i can help it.

      • jabbathetutt says:

        Listen, I’ve believed for decades that the GOP ought to have its license as a political party revoked for incompetence and not actually acting like a political party. The answer is to one, show that the stereotype is wrong and two, that it’s the Democrat Party that is the party of racism and incitement of hatred. And three that Freedom brings people together, that it’s Freedom that creates goodwill across racial, class and religious differences. It’s the socialism of the Democrat Party that creates hatred. It always had.

        As soon as the Tea Party arose, it was immediately smeared as racist by Janeane Garafolo which spread up to Nancy Pelosi. The media jumped in with lies.

        Your Free Party will be smeared next. Giving up and agreeing to the lies and smears is not a solution.

  7. “The Tea Party was able to reform a portion of the Republican Party to fit its beliefs; they demanded what they wanted, and they got it. While our ideals are very different from theirs, we stand in the name of freedom, the founding principle of this country and of this party, and that is something that no American in their right mind can argue with.”

    Firstly, as a lone author, please drop the royal ‘we’?

    The Tea Party didn’t have uniform ‘beliefs’, ‘demand what they wanted’ or get it.

    It’s highly diverse ideologically, and probably majority female.

    It has outposts across the nation, even San Francisco, as chronicled here: http://fund47.blogspot.com .

    If there is a common core, I’d say that it’s the belief that taxes should be lower (hence ‘taxed enough already’ = TEA), but government spending should be cut even more.

    There are some social conservatives in the movement, but what animates this minority most seems to be smaller government. The broader Tea Party found common ground with activist catholics who opposed obamacare.

    In the Tea Party, a solution to the potential divide on social issues comes clearly into focus: shrink the public square so it leaves ample private spaces. We live in an era where the public square is expanding without bound.

    Discussions inside the Tea Party are now zeroing in on the power of the House of Representatives. Indeed, there are many asking the House to retrench, pass a conservative budget, including tax cuts, an across the board spending cut, the *repeal of obamacare*, the elimination of one or two executive branch cabinet departments, and the removal of administrative law mandate authority over vital domestic energy resources.

    Pass a straight authorization for borrowing to make interest payments on the debt, taking that issue off the table — the Democrats, if they refuse to pass it, can’t blame the Republicans for a default.

    Isn’t this the strongest bargaining position to go up against the Democrats? I’m half of a mind to encourage Republicans to pass such legislation, then leave Washington.

    And for goodness sakes, let’s discuss the fiscal cliff components by accurate names. We’re not looking at the ‘expiration’ of a ‘tax cut’. These have been the tax rates of the United States for about 10 years. Any change is a tax increase. And not just any tax increase: **this is a return of the Clinton tax increases** of 1993-94, passed without a single Republican vote, which brought about a clean sweep of Democrats from majorities in the Congress.

    The Tea Party was integral to Republican turnout in 2010. It had little influence in the Presidential primaries. Many turned out for Romney, but clearly other factions of the old GOP coalition stayed home.

  8. I’m with osage44, except I am far more Tea Party. Ask yourself: If Romney had been elected, would your more-important-than-anything access to abortion and contraceptives be changed? (The answer is “No”, btw; not sure you’ve figured that out.)

    So what’s changed? You’ve managed to force others to pick up your tab, and pay for stuff that you should be responsible for. Everyone’s poorer, less free, more angry at each other.

    Great job.

    I don’t really care what you think of the tea party, the democrats, or the republicans, because I frankly think there’s zero wisdom in your brain, or in the brains of your ‘readers’.

    Not bookmarking this one.

  9. osage44 says:

    It is too late,my friend. Your worthless generation helped re-elect a group of idealogues who have no sympathy for your economic freedom and are now in position to finish what they started. It is but a euphemism to call the Obama administration “semi-socialist”. I do not consider myself a member of the Tea Party, but I sympathize with their views on economic freedom as well as the peaceful and orderly manner in which they publicly espoused their views. And I know for a fact that many people who adhere to the tenets of the Tea Party do not also adhere to the socially conservative views that your peers abhor so vehemently. In fact, I would say,without reservation, that the vast majority of conservatives,Republicans, and Tea Partiers are more tolerant of opposing viewpoints than your socially liberal peer group. That hardly matters now. What does matter is that freedom given away is almost certain to be lost forever. But I don’t believe that there are very many members of your peer group who care about that. They were just too easily gulled into believing the defamatory propaganda of the Left. If they ever come to realize and appreciate what they have so blithely given away, I expect they will wil somehow find a way to blame the Tea Party.
    Good luck on trying to educate your socially liberal and economically conservative friends and peers. I am of a preceding generation, having grown up in the 60s and 70s.I have watched your generation come of age, and I am not optimistic.

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