Fellow Friends of Barack:
I join all liberals and progressives in condemning the terrorism of the Tea Party, just as we condemn terrorism in all its forms. We need a Local War On Terror (LWOT) to replace the futile Global War on Terror (GWOT) of George W. Bush.
As we pursue this great LWOT, we will show conservatives that we know, better than they, how to defeat terror in a way that preserves human rights and American values.
We must address the root causes of Tea Party terrorism. There is nothing intrinsic in the beliefs of the Tea Party that promotes the kind of terrorism we saw on Capitol Hill for the past several weeks. Indeed, there are legitimate grievances that create the climate of frustration that Tea Party leaders exploit. These grievances include: growing national debt, government deficits, job-killing taxes, heavy regulation and economic stagnation.
We should acknowledge blame for Tea Party terrorism. The debt ceiling debate was simply America’s chickens coming home to roost. For decades, the federal government has behaved in an imperialist manner, imposing its mandates on states and individuals. The U.S. shoved the stimulus down the people’s throats–and called them un-American when they resisted. They don’t want to destroy us; they want us to leave them alone.
If we fight the Tea Party using their methods, we become terrorists. When President Obama called on Americans to call their members of Congress, he played right into the Tea Party terrorists’ hands. We lose the moral high ground when we use the same tools of democracy. It’s time to abandon the Astroturf tactics of Van Jones, Moveon.org, and Organizing for America, which are just creating new Tea Party terrorists every day.
We must revoke laws that violate the terrorists’ basic rights. The Affordable Care Act was hailed as a great victory in the fight against Tea Party terror, but the individual mandate takes away the basic rights that are guaranteed in our Constitution. We must also prosecute the legal clerks who drafted the majority memos in Kelo v. New London. If the government treats Tea Party terrorists that way, no American’s rights are safe.
We must show solidarity with vulnerable conservatives. Not every Republican, after all, is a Tea Party terrorist. We should also discourage the burning of the American flag, which the Tea Party considers sacred. In fact, we should display the flag as a gesture of solidarity with those whom our government is persecuting. We must also address the way conservatives are portrayed in Hollywood, which encourages negative stereotypes.
We should negotiate with the Tea Party terrorists without preconditions. In fact, we should propose to withdraw the government to the 1967 lines: a $9 billion deficit (1% of GDP); no Environmental Protection Agency or Department of Education; and a dollar backed by gold. True, some things have changed: we are no longer at war in Vietnam, so we should offer a “swap” and subject the Libya war to the War Powers Resolution.
We need to abandon the divisive rhetoric of the past. President Obama causes many to hate us when he uses words like “enemies” and “extremists.” I suggest we abandon terms like “Tea Party terrorists” entirely. Instead, we should use “concerned citizens.” That is more sensitive–and, perhaps, more accurate.
Above all, we should not question the patriotism of LWOT critics. If we do that, the Tea Party terrorists will have won.