I have begun to realize that it could easily come across that I simply do not like the Tea Party. Why am I bothering to write something about this? The answer would be that I do not want this to be the case. I am a firm advocate for third parties. I want individuals to find the political party that is the best fit for themselves. I want to clarify my claims, my opinions, on the Tea Party in the United States.
When I first heard of the Tea Party, I was quite interested in it. I liked what they said, and I liked what they stood for. I liked that they encouraged all Americans to read the constitution, to understand their government, just as I would recommend this to any of you. I liked their rhetoric about making America a “great nation” once again.
But then, something changed.
I don’t know why it changed either. I don’t know if I changed, if the party changed, or perhaps a mixture of the two. Instead of encouraging people to read the constitution, they began presenting small sections of the constitution to its followers, with no context. This bothers me. Anything, whether the constitution, the Bible, or even the Qur’an can be made out to mean terrible things, far from their original intent, when not presented in context. Whether the Tea Party was taking or using the constitution out of context, is something I don’t care to discuss. It is not my main problem. It merely made me skeptical.
Then, they began making claims, like the often repeated John McCain quote, that this country was founded, a Christian nation.
You can argue me on this, and I would expect some to, but the founding fathers were explicitly clear on their stance of religion in government. Whether you believe that our founding fathers were Christian, which is only half true (some were merely theists), or that the nation was founded on Christian morals, which is again only half true (the morals regarding stealing, adultery, murder, etc. can be found in any major world religion), the founding fathers knew it wise to separate church and state for the protection of them both. To protect the church from government influence/intervention and to protect government from church. This is not to say that religion is corrupt, but that many men have used religion in a corrupt way to gain power.
So to clarify, I do not hate the Tea Party. I do not think that people that like the Tea Party should stop. I do however wish that they would found their claims and rhetoric to a firm foundation and hold true to being the constitutional party they started as.