Do You Really Know WHAT the Tea Party Is? I doubt it.
A refreshingly honest admission by a Yale University professor may do more to help the country see the real Tea Party and understand what it really stands for than any news report could ever do.
Professor, Dan Kahan, did a study on education, religiosity, ideology, and science comprehension and posted his findings on the website CulturalCognition.net. To his very apparent surprise, people who affiliated themselves with the Tea Party were more educated in science than any other political party members.
This discovery shocked Kahan to the point that he exclaimed:
“I’ve got to confess, though, I found this result surprising. As I pushed the button to run the analysis on my computer, I fully expected I’d be shown a modest negative correlation between identifying with the Tea Party and science comprehension. But then again, I don’t know a single person who identifies with the Tea Party. All my impressions come from watching cable tv — & I don’t watch Fox News very often — and reading the “paper” (New York Times daily, plus a variety of politics-focused internet sites like Huffington Post & Politico). I’m a little embarrassed, but mainly I’m just glad that I no longer hold this particular mistaken view.”
I am not really surprised that Mr. Kahan doesn’t know any people who associate themselves with the Tea Party. He is a professor at a very liberal university where academicians find sport looking down on the unwashed uneducated hicks they identify as Tea Partiers or more commonly the more vulgar and disrespectful term Tea Baggers. The Left has denigrated the Tea Party so much that many will not admit their association or identification with the Tea Party to anyone for fear of public ridicule.
I’m confident this is how the majority of Americans have gained their own less-than-positive opinions about the Tea Party and why the general public carries an overwhelmingly negative perspective. Our news media has painted this picture with a continuous barrage of negative comments, allusions, and stories that in my experience always focus on one individual or small group, the fringe, and then extends that negative stereo-type onto all people in the party as a whole.
Every political party has its fringe members. I believe most reasonable and fair-minded people would agree the fringe does not represent those groups as a whole, but the Tea Party is not given the benefit of that reasoning.
Anyone who has attended a Tea Party event, meeting, or rally, knows from experience these negative images and stories are more fabrication than fact.
The Tea Party is not a political party but rather a movement of common people who feel the Government has taken too large a place in our lives.
Most who align with Tea Party ideals are worried about the constant increase in Government size and control over their lives along with a huge increase in expenditures that has increased the national debt to a point where it can never be reduced to any appreciable level.
Tea Party people won’t ask for your political affiliation if you inquire about what the Tea Party stands for. But they will ask you how you feel about the size of Government, the constitution, whether the Federal Government should be involved in Education, Health Care, Energy, Marriage, and other important social issues of the day.
They strongly believe the Affordable Care Act should not be implemented in its current form for many reason, but mainly because it was forced to a vote without having been read by those who voted, without people having any understanding as to what the unintended consequences would be, and with the costs being completely misrepresented.
Why should those people be branded as kooks, terrorists, jihadists, racists, and traitors?
If representatives who run on Tea Party principles use every legal means possible to prevent implementation of a law they feel is harmful to more Americans than it helps, do they deserve to be pilloried?
Those in power fear the Tea Party. It is as grass roots as any movement has ever been. It is made up of Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, and Independents. It is a group that has had enough of a government they see as out of control in its spending, its regulations, its overreaching legislation, and its seeming lust and death grip on power and control over the people of this country.
They’ve reached the proverbial end of their rope and they’re speaking out. Some are doing and saying things none of us want to see or hear, but they are the few, the fringe, and not representative of the whole. It’s time the media accurately portray who and what the Tea Party is and stop spreading misinformation.