Thursday, June 17, 2010

Tea Party & Engaging The Culture War

Everyone knows that Americans rooting for the Tea Party movement tend toward the pro-life/pro-family/pro-marriage side of the hot button social issues, but establishment conservative leaders insist on coaching the Tea Party to steer clear to avoid typical liberal criticism, such as the first article below.

On the other hand, there's Congressman Mike Pence who disagrees, saying the movement is about "going back to the source of our greatness, which is our character, our faith, our belief in limited government.”

-- From "Culture war rages on in 2010 election, with female soldiers" by Susan Jacoby, posted at Washington Post 6/13/10

Ramesh Ponnuru, a senior editor at National Review, hailed this election as the year of the pro-life woman. "These women will make it easier for pro-lifers to discuss the issue in the terms we want to discuss it," she writes, "as a plea for justice for a vulnerable group."

. . . Mainstream journalists have taken great pains over the past year to distinguish between the Christian right and the Tea Party . . . though, there is a huge overlap between the Christian right and the tea party movement, between the Republican Party and the Tea Party. One of the signature achievements of the Christian right over the past 30 years has been to meld traditional anti-tax and anti-government positions with support for government intervention on behalf of the morality articulated by conservative Christians.

. . . Sarah Palin, the Tea Party's Red Queen, is the personification of the two strands in right-wing thought and politics.

. . . Born-again right-wing women like [former HP CEO, and now GOP Senate candidate from California, Carly] Fiorina, who was actually born in 1954, and Palin, born in 1964, are just young enough to have benefited from all of the opportunities that the feminist movement fought so hard to open to all women in the 1970s, without having had to contribute anything. The anti-government ideology of these women is particularly hypocritical, since they would be nowhere without the anti-sex discrimination laws that opened doors in education, employment and business to women of their generations.

. . . These right-wing women politicians are anti-feminists who have benefited personally from feminism. Now they are allying themselves with the Good Old Boys of right-wing religion and right-wing economics and calling themselves pro-life and "free market" feminists. And right-wing male blowhards, whose mouths are more accustomed to saying "feminazi" than "feminist," are eager to anoint these women as standbearers for the cause of Bible-based government intervention in Americans' private lives and government neglect of the public good.

Those atheists who are also libertarian conservatives ought to think about everything inside the package if they like the glittery anti-government wrapping enveloping Tea Party/Republican candidates this year. Whether that candidate has an XX or an XY chromosomal structure, he or she is equally beholden to people who want to make their morality the law of the land. These women, like their male counterparts, are opportunists with no shame. Let's give them a big shout-out for defining equal opportunity down!

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Tea Party Movement Shouldn't Focus Only on Fiscal Conservatism, It’s Also About Traditional Morality, Congressman Says" by Penny Starr, CNSNews Senior Staff Writer 6/17/10

The Tea Party movement and its grassroots political activists are defined by loyalty to the U.S. Constitution, limited government and individual liberty -- not social issues such as abortion. That's what one analyst argued at a gathering of conservatives in Washington on Wednesday.

Journalist and author Jonah Goldberg said the movement should avoid cultural issues such as abortion if it is to have continued success.

A conservative congressman, however, disagreed.

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.), the chairman of the House Republican Conference, said people are also drawn to the Tea Party movement because it embraces traditional American morality, including the sanctity of life and the traditional definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

“One last thought to leave you with,” Pence said in his concluding remarks: “This is something I’ve said around the country at many Tea Party gatherings and grassroots gatherings. And it needs to be said, and that is, that what’s animating this authentic American movement is that our present crisis is not just economic and fiscal. It’s moral in nature.

“At the root of these times, I believe there are millions of Americans who see, in Washington, D.C., and on Wall Street, people in positions of authority walking away from the timeless principles of honesty, integrity, an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay,” Pence said.

“I’ve talked to people in this movement that our leaders need to recognize that public policy alone will not cure what ails this country,” Pence said. “It’s going to take public virtue and a return to the institutions that nourish the character of the nation and reaffirm our commitment to the sanctity of life, the sanctity of traditional marriage, and to the importance of religion in every day life is also quietly central to this movement around the country.”

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.