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View Diary: New Study: Race plays large role in Tea Party anger (285 comments)

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  •  The rhetoric of the tea party is repackaged (0+ / 0-)

    from the racist rhetoric of Southern segregationists.  During the sit-ins and the freedom rides in the early 1960's, segregationists accused the federal government of taking away their freedoms--especially the freedom to choose whom to serve and what to do on their own property.  They claimed that the protesters were communist agitators (today socialist is the preferred term because Communism doesn't have the same emotional impact that it once did).  They claimed that they wanted their country back and that states should have the right to decide what their citizens did and did not do. They complained that their tax dollars were going to support oppression by federal troops in their own states. They claimed to be victims even as they brutalized others. They excused their own violence as being incited by the conduct of the protesters and the freedom riders.

    The rhetoric of the tea party movement is just the same and uses the same jargon and contains the same complaints.  If the tea partiers are not racist, why is it that only people of color were spat upon as they walked from the Capitol during the HCR votes? The rhetoric is intended to stir up the same fears and resentments that white Southerners have held since the Civil War.  Bob McDonnell brought back Confederate history month in Virginia to pander to these sentiments. People who embrace the "Lost Cause" tradition claim the the Confederates were the victims and call the Civil War "The War of Northern Aggression." The movement is the same old racism wrapped in new clothes.

    What is surprising about the poll (and I do think we need to see the methodology and raw data) is that more of the tea partiers didn't admit to these racist beliefs.  Frankly, I suspect that these attitudes are under-reported.

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