A lot has been written about the Tea Party and whether or not it’s a racist organization. I think we need to examine this carefully. If we are going to go on the assumption that the Tea Party is racist because they oppose President Obama, and President Obama is black, that doesn’t seem fair. When I was growing up I hated the TV show, “Webster”. It didn’t have anything to do with the fact that Webster was black. It was really that laugh. Remember how creepy his laugh was? He was like Chucky before the Chucky movies even existed. Now, I loved “Different Strokes”. That was a great TV show. Even though as it went on it became a little disconcerting that Willis continued to get older while Arnold stayed the same age. I think there must be a lost episode where Arnold is revealed to have a picture of himself in the attic that is aging for him. Unless Arnold was supposed to be a vampire. Boy, that show was ahead of its time.
And before this becomes a discussion of how “I have a black friend I’m not racist” I will try and get back on topic and say I enjoyed the content of “Different Strokes”. I just didn’t enjoy “Webster”. I also enjoyed, “The A-Team” and “Knight Rider”. The car is black in Knight Rider. I have no idea if that’s relevant or not.
It’s easy to argue the merits of the Tea Party platform. It’s hard to argue that the platform is a racist one. To me that seems to be the most important issue. Not so much whether or not there are people in the Tea Party who have racist viewpoints. I’m sure there are. It’s a big organization. The same can be said of the NAACP, the Catholic Church, and probably at least one of those kids on “John & Kate Plus 8”. I’m thinking the one with the glasses.
But is the preponderance of the membership racist? This seems unlikely to me. In fact, it seems like there is some not so subtle prejudice at play to suggest this. Ask most non Tea Party members to describe a Tea Partier and they will tell you that they are older, working class, fat, white people. Clearly, there is some stereotyping going on with this description. To some people, just because someone is older, working class, fat, and white they automatically assume they’re racist. But that’s quite a leap. I think it might be fair on the whole to assume these people hate salads, but not so fair to assume they hate blacks. Blacks with salads however, becomes a trickier issue.