Is the tea party heartless?
The tea party has been beleaguered since it began to nationally organize in 2009 with the general perception that it was a bastion of conservative ethnocentric racist lunatic fringers. It also seemed to draw from the far right of the Republican Party that openly shouted racial slurs and hateful slogans about liberals, then-Sen. Barack Obama and their ties with socialism at McCain-Palin rallies in the ramp-up to the 2008 general election.
But since its acceptance as a legitimate political movement after the Republican takeover of the House of Representatives following the 2010 midterm elections, it has managed to keep much of the generalizing and stereotyping at bay, although the adherence to strict and intransigent political positioning during the summer debate over raising the debt ceiling (the tea party position was to get spending cuts only to combat the federal fiscal budgetary issues and not raise the debt ceiling at all)cost the movement some popularity points in the polls.
Still, incidents such as the one in Tampa at the debate do not do much to further disseminate the message of individual liberty, less government, less regulation, and less taxation.
They display a callous disregard for humanity at such moments that then reflects poorly on the movement as a whole, reinforcing the stereotypes and generalizations already prevalent the tea party consists of disgruntled, self-important, self-interested, ethnocentric anti-nihilists that have theirs, will protect what is theirs at all costs, and will deny passionately that society or "others" had anything to do with their success or social positioning.
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