Tea Partiers Follow an Old Tradition
Whether or not you identify with the tea partiers (surveys indicate that most Americans don’t), you have to respect their energy and passion.
Right or wrong, those who gathered at the Southern Pines Post Office Thursday for the Tax Day demonstration sponsored by Moore TEA Citizens were carrying on a strong tradition that goes back to the founding of our republic and beyond.
This tradition is so dear to Americans and so fundamental to our creed as a nation that the Founding Fathers enshrined it in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States — which guarantees, among other things, “the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Though they’re petitioning a duly and democratically elected government instead of the kind of repressive, imperialist monarchy that sparked the original Tea Party, these partiers do have plenty of grievances for which they seek redress: Government is too big. Taxes are too high. The health-care law stinks. And the Obama administration is leading us in scary, un-American directions.
Some bystanders and passers-by on Thursday clearly supported those stands. Others just as clearly rejected them. But all had to agree that the partiers behaved themselves and kept things peaceful and civil while at the same time leaving no doubt where they stood on issues of the day. That’s what it’s all about.
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