Last Saturday, while attending a local Tea Party rally, my worst fears were confirmed. As I approached the site I could feel the hate generated by the music being played and the people trying to trick me by smiling and conversing, just trying to lure me into their trap.
Sure enough, as I was directed to my parking spot, the parking attendants also knew the trouble I was getting myself into. Their smiles and their pointing and their comments, such as "welcome" and "glad you could make it" even made me more certain that I was being led to my demise.
As I got out of my car and approached the frenzied crowd (they wanted to appear calm on the outside, but I knew it was simply a ruse to fool me) I could feel the anger among them. There they were, sitting in their lawn chairs or standing and talking to each other, smiling and laughing and just waiting for me to turn my back so they could hit me over the head with their signs.
And speaking of their signs! I couldn't believe the hateful, radical statements that were printed on them. They quoted such radicals as Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin and John Adams, among others, and tried to get me to react by saying "smaller government," "less taxes," "no Obamacare" and on and on.
I knew then that I should leave, but I was afraid that I would get back to my car and find the windows smashed and my tires slashed, so I stayed near the front, where I knew I could rush to the highway and flag down a passing motorist if I had to flee for my life.
The speakers were also in on the act. They pretended to be patriotic and talked about topics such as the Constitution, the Second Amendment, a less-intrusive government, but I could see right through them. I knew that underneath their jackets they had pro-Obama, -Reid and -Pelosi re-election buttons. It's a good thing the media warned me about all of this ahead of time.
And guns! They were everywhere! Well, no, I can't say I saw any, but I knew they had to be there, hidden under everyone's shirts or in their pocketbooks. I'm so glad I was warned by the press ahead of time.
I take it back, the NRA was there and raffling off what appeared to be a collector's item. I couldn't believe the organizers allowed that organization to participate! After all, they do express support of the Second Amendment and provide programs such as hunter safety education for youth. Just the sight of that unloaded rifle sitting there almost made me faint of fright. You can bet I steered clear of that tent.
OK libs, you can breathe again. No, you don't have a new convert. I just had to point out the ridiculousness of your statements when you write to the editor. But you should be worried about the growth of the Tea Party movement.
We are for real; we are a danger to your socialist agenda and will keep growing in spite of your feeble attempts to label, insult or demean us. As a matter of fact, you might deserve the credit for causing us to grow as fast as we have been.
From the first rally last year in Milford that had about 50 people attending, to the second one that year held in Oneonta attracting 250 people, to the one (of many more rallies this year) held last Saturday drawing more than 1,300 participants, it is obvious we won't be running out of steam or be intimidated by you elitist radicals.
Yes, we do stand for a lot of things. Only a blind liberal or a person preferring to keep his or her head in the sand thinks we are the party of no. We are for a smaller, less-intrusive government, a strong defense, secure borders and lower taxes. We happen to believe in the Constitution and the rule of law. We happen to be true patriots rather than those who pretend to be but still let their country slide down the slippery socialist slope.
And yes, there is a grain of truth when one says we are simply against everything. We are against everything that your leader, Barack Obama, that bastard child of Marxism, stands for.
But in less than two years he will go the way of his predecessors.
After the 2010 elections you will find us to be more demanding and more of something you liberals should fear.
Tom Sears is a professor of accounting at Hartwick College in Oneonta. He can be reached at SearsT@hartwick.edu. His column appears every other week. His columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/tomsears.