covered the tea party phenomenon in recent weeks, by letting
the movement's organizers speak their minds about the issues
that concerned them. We felt that the whole phenomenon had
been mistreated via the flurry of sound bites that has characterized
its coverage over the past year. As a result, we were told
that our coverage was the most fair they'd received to date.
Several times, we were asked what we thought of what people
were saying, or where we stood, politically. We declined,
at the time, because our concentration was on news coverage,
and not editorializing. But here, in the context of an editorial,
we can finally share some of our thoughts. We understand and
appreciate the emotions we witnessed, the frustration and
anger at the many complex challenges facing us all these days.
But we feel that the political conclusions being reached are
not only naÔve, but wrong. And frankly, as anti-democratic
as they might be characteristically American in many ways.
There's a lot of talk about our nation drifting towards socialism,
including anger at such efforts over the past century and
longer... and occasional bursts of anti-Communist rhetoric,
as if the Cold War had suddenly surged back to life as a battle
between economic systems, and not spheres of military influence.
The last I looked, though, our government was set up as a
democratic republic, on representational levels, and not as
an economic test case. And many of the so-called socialist
systems being railed about, all paid for by taxes of various
sorts, have been in place since the earliest days of the nation.
What gives? Do people really want anarchy? Are they really
looking to revert the move to civil service and federal standards
put into place to even out inequities between states and communities
throughout the U.S.? There's a lot of talk about the American
way of self reliance. How far do people want to take this?
Do we want to pave our own roads, police our own communities
with posses, print our own money? Term limits are making a
come back. Do we want the same for doctors and other skilled
professionals? The idea of any compromise has been scoffed
at, s though the term, "politic," did not ever include
such civility. Doesn't anybody wonder what responsibilities
giant corporations might have to "we the people?"
Or why we form communities, and operate as a society, in the
first place? I strongly believe that all governmental entities
involve aspects of socialism, along with many other elements.
And that like it or not, we ARE judged by the ways in which
we treat all in our society, and not just the heights to which
one can reach with the right opportunities. What freedoms,
exactly, are being taken away by sharing? What liberties are
at stake? What America are you speaking about? And what sort
of government is being discussed here, should these tea parties
have their way? It seems to me, someone's being manipulated
here and once again, real challenges are being overlooked
in light of larger issues that have no place in how communities
really work. But that's just my opinion... for now. PS