The Ugly Americans

I saw a very large pick up truck barreling down the freeway Sunday with 2 mullet wearing white guys and 2 bumper stickers on the back of their truck.  One said, “Don’t Tread on Me.”  The other one said, “Don’t Blame Me, I voted for the American.”  I was caught between feeling horrified, disgusted, and a little afraid.  You see, my first impulse was to pull alone side Bubba and J.R., smile like I was flirting, and share my middle digit with them.  But it occurred to me, that people like that actually kill over very small things.  I was pretty sure there was a shootin’ iron somewhere in the truck, and a man who couldn’t wait to use.  I am also trying to grow up and stop doing things like that, flipping people off and making my self a target of potentially deadly maniacs.

Now I know some will argue that the Gadsen flag is as patriotic as apple pie and supporting same sex marriage.  It was designed by and is named after American general and statesman Christopher Gadsden and was carried by the Continental Marines during the American Revolution.  But these days I believe it has come to symbolize another kind of revolution, and is intended as a subtle (or not so subtle) threat to liberals, gays, non Christians and persons of color in general.  They call themselves “The Tea Party” movement.  The used to call themselves “Tea Baggers” until someone finally took pity and let them in on what that phrase actually means.  Oops!  I still call them Tea Baggers, cause I think it’s funny and I think they are The Ugly Americans.

I refuse to pretend to believe that the Tea Baggers came to be because of taxes, although that is their rallying cry.  They came to be when a black man, and a Democrat won the office of President of the United States.  If taxes were the issue, then I don’t see how such venom, pun intended, came to be as most Americans pay less taxes than when Bush was in office.  It also can’t be because of the economy, as that began it’s amazingly swift decent into the black hole when Bush was in office.  National Debt can’t be the issue because when Bush left office, he left us with an off the charts deficit.  No, it’s all the about the black guy, gays fighting for their civil rights, and Tea Bag movement’s blind hate for anything or anyone different than themselves.  It  is also about religion.  Christianity to be exact.  Their “you are either with us or against us” attitude about all these issues and their believing that they are superior and entitled because of their beliefs is their true platform.

Fortunately, The Tea Baggers stick out like a pile of fresh dog poop among decent human beings.  It isn’t hard for me to separate them from good, decent people.  I see them self destructing in a few years in spite of their efforts to intimidate politicians and anyone else they see as a threat.  After all, no one can ignore fresh dog poop just sitting there.  They will be scooped up and tossed aside.  Believing that keeps me from actually getting sick over the kind of hatefulness I see spewing from their bullhorns.

That said, I am left with a dilemma.  I find these people as scary, repulsive and racist as The KKK.  They call themselves Republicans, sometimes Libertarians, as if they are a part of a main stream political party.  But I don’t see it that way, and I know several conservatives who feel the same way.  And I have to tell you, one of my very best friends, and several of my good and beloved friends are Republicans.  And they are not these people.

What I am learning, and practicing, is radical acceptance of the opinion of others as well as my steadfast open eye policy about The Tea Baggers.  My friend, I will call her “Abby,” is literally one of the kindest, most giving persons I know.  She would give anyone in need the shirt off her back.  She is in a caring profession, nursing, and a dedicated one at that.  She is also Christian and a Republican.  We don’t talk much about politics, but when we do, it is with respect, and open minds.

I have at least half a dozen people like her in my life.  I am from Orange County after all!  I knew if I wanted to have diversity in my circle, that it would include not just people of different religions, nationalities, sexual preferences, and races, but political parties as well.  This does not mean that I excuse or accept hateful language or behavior of a group of people who hide behind the GOP label.  If I draw the line in sand based on my politics, then I am guilty of the very thing I hate, being a bigot.  Plus I would miss out on a lot of awesome people.

  18 comments for “The Ugly Americans

  1. junior
    August 24, 2011 at 6:16 am

    “This does not mean that I excuse or accept hateful language or behavior ..”

    “Tea Baggers” is hateful language – and “The Tea Baggers stick out like a pile of fresh dog poop ..” is especially hateful language.

    • Kathy Findley
      August 24, 2011 at 2:04 pm

      I didn’t make the name Tea Baggers up, they did! And it stuck. Just like fresh dog poop.

      • junior
        August 25, 2011 at 9:56 am

        “I didn’t make the name .. up, they did!”

        That is likely untrue and regardles, true or not, your continued use of the term is vile, disgusting and is hate speech.

        • Kathy Findley
          August 26, 2011 at 12:39 pm

          It is absolutely true. That is what the members were calling themselves when they first became “public.” They didn’t seem to find it vile and disgusting. At least I have enough guts to use my real name when I post, J.R.

          • junior
            August 26, 2011 at 2:20 pm

            They didn’t find it vile and disgusting because they don’t have dirty trashy minds such as yours Kathy.

            My anonymity does not negate your vile and disgusting language.

            • Kathy Findley
              August 26, 2011 at 3:27 pm

              I didn’t know what it meant until I googled it. How do you know what it means?????

  2. Dan Chmielewski
    August 24, 2011 at 11:28 am

    so are Tea Party accusations of socialists, communists, Muslim, terrorist etc etc…

    • August 25, 2011 at 3:13 am

      Dan, my experience is that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, chances are pretty good that it is a duck. Now to your comment, “If he walks like a Socialist, talks like a Socialist, chances are good that he is a Socialist. Obama and the Democrats don’t even try and hide their agenda any longer and are working hard to redistribute our wealth to the masses. Wasn’t that one of the cornerstones of the new society envisoned by Karl Marx? Add in Obamacare and the agenda continues. But wait, something has happened to Obam’s New Society Plan. Everyday Americans from small towns and large cities across America have noticed where their country is headed and don’t like it one bit. They are not strong arming hard core union thugs like you see at many Democratic Party rallys. They are moms, pops, grandparents and people of all races and walks of life. They are waving American flags, singing patriotic songs and offering prayers that God will bless America. They are not violent people, nor do they advocate violence toward anyone. They are fed up with govenrment and plan on doing something about it, It won’t be rioting in the streets or burning things. These people, those radical “Tea Baggers” as trash mouth Kathy Findley refers to them, will be getting out the vote and finishing what they started in 2010. The four City Council Members from Costa Mesa are not Tea Party Members and are rather clones of the Orange County Republican Party. This Republican group is why a lot of people are jumping ship and becoming Independents. However that is another story. In my estimation, the election of 2012, will be as bitter and devisive as we have ever seen in this country. There is a battle going on for the “Soul of America” between the Left and the Right. The end result will likely determine the future of the country. No, I am not a Tea Party Member, but am so infuriated with the Republicans that I may well be by election time.

      • JFW
        August 25, 2011 at 6:41 am

        It’s not “Republican v. Democrat,” “Socialism” or any such nonsense: It’s the plutocracy trying to wipe out the Middle Class in this country once and for all. They want it all and are trying to trick middle class people into voting against themselves.

        If they succeed the U.S. will end up like Mexico- Rich or Poor.

        • August 25, 2011 at 7:27 pm

          JFW, not sure who this plutocracy is that you refer to, or even what they stand for? You had better bone up on Socialism, because while denying it, all the things you mentioned are part of the Karl Marx philosophy. Redistribute the wealth, government owns and controls everything and there are only two classes, the ruling class (them) and the masses (us). Lastly, if we don’t get the border sealed up and strict immigration enforcement working at all levels, Mexico will retake California one day. How’s your Spanish?

      • August 26, 2011 at 5:24 pm

        Pat -
        sorry it took awhile to get to you, but this isn’t the crowd I saw in Irvine when nancy Pelosi came to town. Nasty signs, hard core anger, insults, threats, you name it. And TeaBaggers is what Neal Cavuto first referred to them and he’s on Fox News.

  3. Joe
    August 24, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Kathy,
    I’m thinking the 4 thugs on the Costa Mesa City Council are all tea baggers. At least the Riggmarshal..

    • Kathy Findley
      August 24, 2011 at 5:17 pm

      They are the O.C. poster boys. I believe they dropped their deuce on Costa Mesa because they assumed that since it is so conservative here, they’d be met with open arms and plow right through the city with no resistance. What a surprise for them when they found out even Costa Mesa Republicans are disgusted by them. It warmed my heart.

  4. nocclib
    August 24, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    Well written, Kathy! Tea Partiers should be ashamed of themselves for hijacking a patriotic name and symbol of our original Revolution. Our Founders risked everything–lives, property, fortunes and future–to build this country. The new “Tea Party” is doing everything it can to destroy what they created. Individual members may be decent people but they are, at best, deluded by the real money behind the movement.

    • August 25, 2011 at 7:45 pm

      nocclib, while not being a Tea Party Member, I see three choices available. First, I can join the conga line dancing along behind the tune being played by the Pied Piper of Chicago and meet the same fate as did the Children of Hamlin Town in the original story. Second, I can sit on my hands, doing nothing except whine and moan about those darn Republicans who have sold out their party and become Democrat clones. Thirdly, I can join with the Tea Party people, most of whom are in my range of conservative ideas about government. I will also keep in mind that there are radicals attached to this group, just as there are radical elements attached to the liberal movement. It is not the money behind the Tea Party Movement that gives them their power. Their power comes from decent, hard working people, fed up with government who have made a conscious choice to get involved. They are not deluded, just plain angry that Congress has sold out our country. Watch the anger grow between now and November 2012, as the “Silent Majority” is quiet no longer.

      • Kathy Findley
        August 26, 2011 at 12:36 pm

        You should start your own blog! I say that in all sincerely, not being snarky. But no, there are NOT just as radical elements attached to the Liberal movement AT ALL. Maybe in the 1970s, but not now pal. It is the money behind their movement, and in spite of that, they are circling the drain. I abhor extremes on either side. I have met a few of the tea party folk, and decent is NOT what they are. They want to kill the middle class, which the less educated members don’t grasp, and push the religious and upper class agenda.

  5. junior
    August 27, 2011 at 7:16 am

    Kathy Findley on August 26, 2011 at 3:27 pm
    “I didn’t know what it meant until I googled it. How do you know what it means?????”

    Is that an apology of sorts?

    “How do you know what it means?????” – I pay attention to the news and blogs. BTW – that is a weird question.

    Dan has no such excuse – he knows what it means.

    • Kathy Findley
      August 27, 2011 at 8:03 am

      Nothing to apologize for. Have a nice day J.R.

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