(This post was inspired by the article “Tea Party Lights Fuse For Rebellion on Right” in the NY Times)
Through KingstonCitizens.org, a great deal of time and effort has been made to inspire the citizens of Kingston to work together and collectively take responsibility for the shape of their community and local government. Putting energy into local issues and “arming” oneself with the facts on any current topic is the most practical and effective way to change the world around us.
The creation of the recent Tea Party movement is not a big surprise to me – though I still find myself perplexed. Here, we live in a part of the world where it is possible to gather, discuss and propose new ideas. We have the freedom to insist that our government reflect our point of view and have the ability to change it if it does not in a non-violent manner.
But that can’t be done only during an election cycle. What relationship in your life works when you only check in with it once every 2-4 years or in crisis? Being civically responsible is a pact that we each need to make in order to live together in a reasonable and humane fashion.
In the midst of deep financial insecurity, it is simple to see how some of the values of the Tea Party might be appealing to many. But packing pistols and threatening to revolt as a way to take back a government – in this day and age – is a primitive and sinister shortcut.
In Kingston, Alderman from Wards one and five are actively reaching out and willing to meet monthly or as often as there is interest. I believe that all nine of our alderman would be willing to do the same if their constituents requested it. If you find that is not the case, then you can pull your neighbors together in the form of a community or neighborhood watch group.
Here’s another suggestion for the locals disheartened by their current local government administration. Insist on term limits and change the charter as it reads now. That’s a good initial step that would help to keep things moving along, and it’s entirely possible to accomplish.
Bring some new ideas to the table to help create a healthy community and strong local economy. Leave some here in the comment section if you’d like.
…and for those who choose to own a gun, put it back in the closet for crying out loud.
2 thoughts on “A Sinister Shortcut: Tea Party Madness”
Acting locally is essential: that’s where we live, that’s where you can get results. That’s the place to start. Cheers to wards 1 and 5!
And we see that economic security is not a luxury: it is essential to the well being of the community. Helping our neighbors, keeping the place in order, and being neighbors that deserve help, that can go a long way in making and keeping a civil environment.
And I don’t know if anything can long take the place of a job.
Not all “tea party” enthusiasts are radical. As in every political arena there are always a fringe element that takes a radical stance. I feel the TeaParty movement is borne out of frustration of many who feel that Washington is not listening and cannot understand what “main street” is concerned about. Our congress and senate is out of touch of what the everyday American wants to see happen. The attention that the tea party has garnered has opened a dialogue with the current representatives in government. So much so that probably for the first time in quite awhile incumbents are not too sure of their future in government which is fine by me. They need to pay attention to the voters and really listen , for the first time in their elected careers. Yes, I said careers and there in lies the whole crux of our current situation.
This gives us some insight into what our forefathers experienced at their tea party long ago in BostonHarbor. There is still a sense of “taxation without representation.”
Term Limits is a start. Trying to change our city charter will be another start. Most of us can start on the local level. Get a dialogue going with other neighbors and attend council meetings .Voice your concerns. If you go to complain try to come with a solution. Get involved. Don’t always think that “the other guy”will do it.