TEA: Taxed Enough Already. This is a movement which has my whole-hearted support. It is all about Americans trying to take back their rights to their own money. Why should the government decide what we do with our paychecks? It is largely the people of America's fault, they keep voting money out of their own pockets. But what about this healthcare bill (which will cause a raise in taxes)? About half of the American population opposed it, yet it passed. What does this mean? It means that the only reason the bill got through was because of a majority vote, not because it lined up with the Constitution. That is a characteristic of a democracy, not a republic. America is a republic, or at least it was. I'd like to have that back again.
So of course, when it came to April 15, the biggest day of the year for TEA Party goers, my family and I were prepared. We made up signs, unpacked the American flags from the attic, hung our clothes with tea bags and loaded up into the car, ready to head off to a party scheduled to be in a parking lot behind a movie theater in Bella Vista. We brought four of our friends in addition to our own family, and in two vehicles zoomed off to get there on time, hoping that we wouldn't be late!
When we arrived we were more than a little confused. There were cars in the parking lot, but nothing like what we had expected. We saw that they must all belong to restaurant and grocery store goers. After cruising around a little we saw a Jim Holt van sitting forlornly by itself with some signs leaning up against it.
No one else was there.
I don't know what happened. Perhaps the event coordinator (if there was one) dropped the ball, perhaps the time frame, noon to 6, was far too broad. There was nothing going on in the parking lot, and even after we all had lunch at a nearby Mexican restaurant, the place was bare of activists. We talked to the lady in the Jim Holt van, who had been there for an hour and a half already, and learned that a representative had driven by earlier, but he had had to leave and go to Little Rock. To her knowledge at least one couple had come to the party, seen that there was no action, and gone on.
You know what's the real kicker? After we went home yesterday afternoon, Mom and Dad went into town to do some work and while there stopped by the Bentonville Square during the time another TEA Party had been scheduled. No one was there either.
Perhaps everyone decided to go to Fayetteville instead (they were going to have Dick Morris as a guest speaker), perhaps the events in Bella Vista and Bentonville weren't well-publicized. But really, we were willing to go, we didn't want to fight the traffic in Fayetteville, we were all ready and prepared and came wearing tea bags! So where was everyone else?
Do you believe that the average American should spend 14.8% of their yearly pay on taxes (see the video here)? Did you do anything about that on April 15? Were you one of those people who felt like they ought to do something, and didn't? Maybe you had something better to do, a legitimate excuse. But what about the other 364 days of the year?
No matter what you believe in, action is one of the few things people understand. You have to make your voice heard, whether it means attending a rally, penning an article, wearing a t-shirt, writing a blog post, telling your friends, making calls, sending letters...whatever you are capable of doing. Don't let others do the dirty work for you. Don't think that you can't do something! Because if you do your part, others are almost sure to gather around you. You just have to speak out.