Doug Kendall: Strange Brew: The Tea Party Mocks the Founders' Stance on Armed Rebellion
[Doug is the founder and President of Constitutional Accountability Center (fomerly Community Rights Counsel), a think tank, law firm and action center based in Washington, DC. CAC promotes the progressive promise of the Constitution's text and history.]
Perhaps the single most disturbing thing about the rise of the Tea Party as a growing force in American politics is the frequency with which the movement’s most notable figures have rallied the faithful with talk of armed rebellion or revolution, often invoking the Framers in support of this call to political violence:
*Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has said “America is ready for another revolution and you and I are a part of this,” and told her supporters after the passage of the health care bill: “Don’t Retreat, Instead ‐ RELOAD!”
*Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota has claimed “it was Thomas Jefferson who said, a revolution every now and then is a good thing. What do you think?”
*Senate candidate Sharron Angle of Nevada took the Jefferson analogy one step further, telling conservative talk radio host Lars Larson, “In fact, Thomas Jefferson said it’s good for a country to have a revolution every 20 years, I hope that’s not where we’re going. But, you know, if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies.”
*Rick Barber, an Alabama candidate for Congress, wins the “craziest Tea Party candidate ever” award for this ad featuring an actor dressed as George Washington rallying Tea Partiers to “gather your armies,” as a response to progressive taxation.
With anger high in this country in response to the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and with the rise of armed extremist groups since President Obama took office, these comments are just about as smart as throwing a lighted match into a powder keg. As Michael Gerson, a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush wrote in a column for the Washington Post, comments like Angle’s lack “the seriousness of genuine sedition,” but should, nonetheless, be “disqualifying for public office.”
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Sam Adams - 7/28/2010
It is NOT sedition to overthrow tyranny.
"The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." -- (Thomas Jefferson)
Also suggest you read the Declaration of Independence--it not only justifies overthrowing tyranny, it ADVOCATES it!
Bambi Myob - 7/28/2010
Seems ironic that the HISTORY News Network can't recall the reasons for the last revolution in this country.
We shot the Brits and kicked their butts out when their government became too oppressive, as exemplified by high-handed government actions, excessive taxes and operations that aggregated power to the elite at the expense of the People.
Today is much the same - except it is much worse. Not only are we directly taxed far more than the colonists ever were, but the government central bank (the Fed) has devalued our currency by 97% - which is simply another HUGE (but hidden) tax.
Elections have not cleared out the scum because much of the money collected is used to buy votes from those who never produced anything to begin with.
What's left? To meekly submit to slavery? That is one choice.
Armed rebellion, with blood in the streets and the deaths of many political "masters" is another.
People like Sharron Angle represent a large (and growing) segment of the population far more accurately than their opponents. And isn't that the job of the Congress? To represent the People?