Tea Party can’t claim patriotism as soley its own | TheUnion.com

Tea Party can’t claim patriotism as soley its own

As a combat veteran, I am absolutely sickened by the co-opting of the word “patriot” by any political faction. How dare anyone infer that Americans holding differing views lack patriotic devotion. While I do not fundamentally agree with the Tea Party movement’s underlying principles, I uphold their right to voice them and to organize on their behalf.

What I do not condone is the foolish and unfounded presumption that they somehow own the mantle of patriotism in our blessedly diverse democratic republic.

It’s strange that the Tea Party folks continuously rage against taxes for humanitarian needs, but rarely mention other factors contributing to our present financial crisis. How quiet they are regarding Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy; his $6 trillion war that we’ll be paying off for decades (see book of same title by Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz); the lack of critical industry regulation leading to the sub-prime mortgage crisis; our corporate welfare state that allows executives nearly limitless bonuses, etc.

But this isn’t really about the present crisis. These folks sang the same song long before our economic collapse: Kiss up to the corporations and don’t ask the wealthy to bear their fair share of the cost in maintaining a democratic system. They say that doing so would not be “constitutional,” but that’s just intellectual fundamentalism. The Constitution is a living document that evolves with its populace. If it had not been amended, the majority of you reading this would not have the right to vote.

William Larsen

Nevada City

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