Just what do today’s Tea Partiers believe? What are their values?
Answering these questions is not as easy as it might seem. The Tea Party movement is fragmented, decentralized, and amorphous. It lacks a central authority or national organization, despite the national convention I talked about this week. (Scroll down to see Monday’s post.)
Piecing together information from various media, here’s a list of what Tea Partiers believe—noting, of course, that participants in this grassroots movement may disagree on some of these items.
The unifying value is a distrust of government, especially big government. The unifying fear is the stuff of conspiracy theories: establishment government officials, Democrat and Republican alike, are intent on destroying the Constitution and trampling on the rights of the everyday Americans.
Tea Partiers are anti many things: anti-government, anti-immigration, anti-bailout, anti-stimulus package, anti-deficit.
They are anti-Social Security, anti-Medicaid, anti-Medicare.
They are anti central banking, to wit, the Federal Reserve.
Many believe that Obama was not born in the United States—the so-called “birthers.” Consider, for example, that only 29% of the voters in California who identify closely with the Tea Party say that Obama was born in the United States, according to The Field Poll conducted last month.
What do you think of Tea Party values?
Are they YOUR values?