As a resident Wisconsinite, I am SO glad that Paul Ryan urged his constituents to be "polite" at his recent town hall meeting in Kenosha. Other Republicans have also called for "civility" during their town hall meetings. At Rep. Allen West's town hall meeting this Tuesday (4/26/2011) in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Nicole Sandler was so impolite that she actually asked a question that was not pre-screened! How uncivil can you get? Luckily, Rep. West had plain-clothed security present, to man-handle her out of the hall and turn her over to police, where she was jailed overnight, put into solitary confinement, and maced in the face. I'm so glad politeness is being enforced!
These uncivil budget-questioners really ought to observe the decorum that the Tea Party members displayed in the summer of 2009, when they civilly and politely questioned their representatives on health care reform. I can't remember anything that was MORE polite than the shouting-down and near-riot behavior of those patriots! Excersing their right to free speech is inherently civil. Unlike these current protesters, who are questioning plans that will further enrich the wealthy and powerful interests in this country. Now that's what I call UNcivil!
What I really appreciate is that in 2009, every single time there was any impolite behavior at a town hall meeting, the Republican leadership loudly and publicly denounced it and called for reasoned, respectful debate. They were in the forefront of trying to squelch bullying tactics, so that a fact-based discussion of the actual issues could ensue. Why, the public record is chock-full of such impassioned calls for politeness from Paul Ryan himself. He certainly wouldn't want any impoliteness at a town hall meeting! In fact, I have right here a long, long list of public statements by Paul Ryan and other Republican leaders condemning any boorish behavior that did occur in 2009. I have it right here. Pages and pages. Um. Hold on. I must have left it in my other suit. I'm sure it is around here somewhere. Well, I'm sure a quick internet search will turn up all these statements. I'll get back to you. Soon. Really.