I was at a Tea Party tax day rally in downtown Raleigh. A couple of hundred people were there on a nice spring afternoon/dusk.
Since we don’t back candidates, I’ll talk about key points that speakers brought up or alluded to.
Fairness: Liberals like to talk about fairness. So how fair is it to saddle little kids with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt?
Women: They’re just as oppressed as men, when it comes to watching those numbers tote up on a gas pump.
Empowerment: That’s the key. Conservatives shouldn’t get bogged down in the quagmire of how much government doles out and to whom. A better approach is to show how empowering people also enriches them.
Taxes: Last month — one month — the U.S. went nearly $200 billion deeper in debt. In light of that, would those of us enraged by spending be willing to look at eliminating popular tax breaks that benefit neither the nation nor the truly needy? And are we serious about the debt if we aren’t willing to bite the bullet?
North Carolina, it was plain, suffers from the burdens of government, without necessarily being able to claim even the supposed benefits of government. That is, it too has debt problems, yet lags in some key areas.
Many other issues came up in addition to the ones above. Has anyone been able to weave them into a clear, concise message?
I don’t know if the tea party is stronger or weaker. Since it’s obvious they aren’t going to cause any damage, they may be less “newsworthy.” More important than the movement may be the issues sparking it. Those are as pressing as ever.