Tea Party Terrorists?
We were quite an “intimidating” group. One hundred of Long Island’s Tea Party members, traveling to Albany by charted bus, just to support Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo and his 2% tax cap legislation.
Don’t listen to Chris Matthews! The Tea Party will fight for a fabulous bill even if it’s proposed by a Democrat.
For many in our group, this was their first experience participating in the democratic process. But as we found out later that day, expressing our First Amendment rights was not all that easy or as safe as we had anticipated.
Many of us were veterans or retired seniors. Some took an unpaid day off to attend. All were Tea Party loyalists, and united in their support for Governor Cuomo’s innovative 2% tax-cap legislation.
How appropriate it was that a tax issue was the one that unified all of us. You see, the modern Tea Party movement was founded in part, to lower taxes and put the money back into the hands of the taxpayers, where it could be spent not only more economically but exactly where the local community wants and needs it.
Actually, our Tea Party stands for T.E.A. Or Taxed Enough Already
Some of you have listened to Nancy Pelosi, John Boehner and Peter King rant against the Tea Party as totally disruptive, un-American, right-wing extremists who should be banned from the political arena.
Somewhere, lost in their rhetoric and their own political agenda, was the fact that they have finally met a group of citizens actually ready and willing to fight for their cause. Why is it so irritating to both political parties when issues such as constitutional rights, individual freedoms, national security, and personal responsibility are defended? Can you blame us for opposing the hierarchy of BOTH Republicans and Democrats alike?
What happened to us, in “the well” or lobby of the New York State Senate building was truly frightening.
As we sat there, patiently listening to the speakers, suddenly and without warning, the Capital Police totally “disappeared” and we were surrounded by several hundred screaming, threatening, violent, union thugs, all trying to intimidate us into leaving the building.
I guess this 68-year old senior-citizen, all 5 foot 8 inch, 148 pounds of Brooklyn-born toughness, must have really intimidated them. They screamed at us. They threatened to beat us up. They called us bigots, racists, haters of children and rightwing extremists!
It didn’t work!
We stayed and we remained calm and professional. We were convinced that it was our constitutional right to be there.
To make matters worse for those union “tough guys”, was that, by the end of the day, not only did this group of Long Island “old geezers” like me defy them, but we actually won! The 2% Tax Cap passed and is now the law.
We knew that our kid’s education would not suffer one bit if schools were limited to a 2% increase in their school budget. There wasn’t any decrease in services!
Is that so much to ask from our teachers?
We also knew that higher taxes were strangling many Long Island residents. Many were leaving and moving to less expensive areas.
I truly will never forget that day.
In typical New York Stare politics, the powerful teacher’s union pressured the legislature into adding certain exemptions or cutouts which took much of the clout out of the bill and sometimes allowed more than a 2% increase. But it was a start and the ever-rising trend of tax increases had been reduced.
Maybe the union will offer the 82 unemployed teachers, jobs as union thugs to threaten Tea Party members instead of teaching our children.
What great role models!