My local 9/12 group is fraying under the need to keep up the level of generic outrage displayed at town halls in recent weeks. I know from observation that all the people below generally agree politically, but the desire by some to sustain the level of hysteria Glen Beck is promoting at all times and in all public places is more than the calmer members can take.
As I have mentioned earlier, I have been reassured to hear some calm voices of reason among the heated discussions. I share some of the fundamental concerns that this and other groups are in theory advocating for and it has been good to see that there are people involved who are not simply shouting but actually trying to make some cognizant points. However, recent evolutions of the discussion indicate that tolerance of dissenting opinions is wearing thin.
If this is the path the group chooses to follow then that itself may be for the best. This has always been my belief: allow – nay, encourage – those with outrageous views to air them publicly. More often it is the vocal far Left embarrassing themselves in public – which worked to support the previous administration – now the same thing is happening with the extreme on the Right.
Below is a copy of the thread being discussed for everyone to make their own decision on.
(Note: These are public mailing lists and these conversations are online here, or I wouldn’t be repeating them here. I have removed all of the names and replaced them with “A####” marks – the first letters are not related to actual names.)
The Thread of Discontent itself:
Date: Thursday, August 6, 2009, 8:22 AM
Info. from Tampa 912 project……
This is a Townhall meeting by Organizing for America tomorrow, Thursday, August 6th at 6:00PM to push government, universal healthcare. SEIU , US Congress Member Kathy Castor, and State Representative Betty Reed are scheduled for this meeting.
We need to have many, many of us Patriots show for protesting this Townhall meeting!!! PLEASE attend this meeting!!!
Thursday, August 6, 2009, 8:22 AM
I would like to state right now that I object to “protesting” a town hall meeting. I realize you probably copied and pasted the event, but for us to “protest” town hall meetings is feeding the press frenzy about our groups.
Please “support” your town hall meetings, and participate by getting your opinions heard there.
Date: Tuesday, August 11, 2009, 11:26 AM
B####, your COMMON SENSE is a breath of fresh air. Quite a few of us agree that our mission is shared, but some of the crazies bring us bad press and bad public opinion. I know it is hard for some to engage the brain when the juices are flowing, but some of these “protests” have negative outcome.
There are much bigger and more important things to do, and we can use the energy in other areas. To quote an email I just received from one of our more prominent members: “The constant crying of wolf will degrade the effect we need for next year’s big push”. He’s right. Just as the media has labeled Limbaugh with ridicule, our group is advancing on the same short track.
Read Saul Alinsky.
Sent: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 12:13:35 PM
With all due respect to your thoughts: Your kind of passive thinking is what got this guy in the White House to begin with. If we didn’t have passionate feelings and weren’t able to express them, even strongly at times, when we the people are not being heard of being taken advantage of, then we would still be under British rule.
Sent: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 1:05 PM
I agree with you C#### but I would not put B#### in the same category as A####. B#### has been very active and vocal-she and I just disagree on Rubio which is fine.
Sent: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 3:05:23 PM
D####, I think the subject matter here is the “protest anything!” addiction. It’s been misdirected and it’s getting old. Rubio is another matter, and that one will emerge. Why don’t you gather your little group and apply for census worker assignments for next year? Knock on doors and raise some money for the upcoming mid-term fight. I know your heart is in the right place, but that’s not the body part I’m concerned about.
I have never met a conservative (you ARE a conservative, right?) who is so nasty and miserable. Why didn’t you speak to me at the Tea Party at the Polo field? I know you were there….we had some “A#### sightings”. I just don’t understand why you think your nasty rantings are helpful or to be, as you say, “admired.” It is ALWAYS the same miserable crap from you and it is getting old, and boring.
another thing……if you don’t have the balls to speak to me in person, then don’t address me here either. I am working for the conservative cause 4-5 hours a day-I will not be wasting any of my time responding to you anymore. I don’t know what made you so miserable or what your problem is and I don’t care anymore.
Sent: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 10:17:15 PM
I know loads of folks in this town and nary a one that would call me “nasty”. I guess I’m having too much fun listening to stories from the offices about how revved up and pissed you are at me for finding fault with some of the dumb things you’ve done like picketing Buchanan’s office each day for a week to demand he call for Obama to fire Napolitano (absolutely unbelievably dumb) and picketing the EMPTY Herald Tribune building. I think some of your “work” causes us harm. Think.
Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2009, 12:10 AM
A####, dear A####. In order for me to be “pissed” and “revved up” at you, I would have to actually CARE about you or what you think. Also, I think you are a little confused. I never picketed the Herald Tribune and as for these “people” telling “stories” from the offices (what offices, I wonder?) I think you pulled that one out of your ass.
Date: Wed, 12 Aug 2009 00:48:12 -0400
Why even respond to this sort of negative conduct?
I would ask the moderator to block his access.– juvenile comments are non-productive and a waste of time!
Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2009, 7:00 AM
I had to reply one more time because his last statement was not true. Bad enough he feels the need to “attack” me every time I leave a post but this time he’s just lying. I will reply to him no more and yes, I think he should be taken off as well. Thanks E####
And my response to the group:
I have been following the argument in this thread and I have to speak my own mind on the topic at hand.
Without taking specific positions about any given activity here in Sarasota, I have to say I agree with those who suggest that there is such a thing as too much and that this group and the entire effort it is part of needs to either stop and think what it is attempting or throttle even futher up and really provide an everlasting example of what not to do.
As of now the anti-Obama movement has reached a level of ridiculousness in its public behavior that tops the heights of the anti-Bush efforts during the last administration. This is an impressive accomplishment in itself, if noth
o The bulk of the American population never believed that George Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq because he wanted to make his dad’s friends richer. The ranting of folks on the far left (including among them my own friends and family) never made these sorts of ridiculous accusations true but they did make the protestors look like idiots.
o The bulk of the American population does not believe that Barack Obama is a Muslim Kenyan Communist with a Five-Point Plan to turn America into the next Soviet Union. The ranting of folks on the far right (including among them my own friends and family) have not made these sorts of ridiculous accusations true but they certainly do make most folks prefer to associate with any other group.
The bulk of the American population is usually right – and in both these cases exactly right – which is the whole point of America to begin with. Claiming that the White House has been taken over by a corporate tool who makes all of his decisions based on what is best for Haliburton – or a Commie Plant who is looking to send Gramma off to a Death Camp – is either lunacy or, if true (which neither is), proof that American Democracy doesn’t work and that humans are too foolish to be allowed to rule themselves.
I believe that American Democracy works very very well, and while I can energetically disagree with any given elected official I believe that they generally do the best they can. I do not believe that Americans often elected traitors and I am certain that there has not been one in the White House, ever. In fact, using accusations or implications of treason as tools of fear and intimidation is itself one of the most un-American actions I can imagine.
I fervently support freedom of speech both because it allows the few with an unpopular truth to be heard, but also because it allows truly wrong ideas to be fully aired and shown for what they are. While I honestly believe everyone here has the best intentions in mind, inasmuch as these result in implications and accusations of treasonous intent on anyone else’s part or in attempts to stifle discourse with the kind of “protest” as has become common at townhall meetings, then I oppose those opinions, statements and activities.
Maybe that puts me outside some Purity Boundary and gets me excluded from this group. If so, I wish you all well but I part with a cautionary word about living on shrinking islands of perceived moral superiority.
Will this be the end of my membership in this group? That’s for others to decide, but if so that just further shrinks the boundaries of the island the GOP is eroding itself away on.