I know saying that someone ‘hates America’ has become a hyperbolic statement thrown around by these same right-wing extremists over the course of the last decade, so it’s ironic that I’m sitting here saying it sincerely.
The Tea Party hates America. They don’t even realize it themselves, but they do.
America is a country built on inclusion and immigration, things the Tea Party and those who pander to them actively oppose. Imagine a staunch conservative today saying “give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free.” If the Statue of Liberty were a Republican she’d be in for a primary challenge.
America is a country built on freedom of religion, but there probably aren’t any Muslim Tea Party members, and that’s because the Tea Party hates freedom of religion unless it’s the Christian religion. The demagoguery coming from the right these past few years regarding President Obama’s suspected status as a closeted Muslim has been palpable. The thing is, if the Tea Party is indeed the religion-loving freedom-fest they pretend to be, it shouldn’t matter what religion he belongs to. And because they’re forever the party of “not in the face, not in the face” Democrats end up defending the president’s status as a Christian instead of asking the far more American question, “so what if he is?”
Finally, America is a country founded on democracy, a system of government in which elected officials congregate in Washington to enact the will of the people who invited them there. It is the closest thing on the planet there is to governing by majority rule, and the Tea Party is nothing if not a minority of a minority. They are a group of ideological zealots without the votes to pass their own legislative ideas, and that is by design. But instead of attempting to change hearts and minds, the true watermark of an American patriot, they have resorted to spitefully thumbing their nose at the democratic principles that they claim to hold dear. Through Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), the weak-willed Speaker John Boehner(R-Ohio), the Heritage Foundation, and a handful of representatives, the Tea Party has changed House rules and stymied floor-votes in order to intentionally and unashamedly shut down the government and drive the world into global financial uncertainty.
The Tea Party would respond to all of this by saying that they love America. But they don’t love America. They love “America,” an idealized version of our country that, while existing only in their minds, has become an albatross around the neck of every other rational and clear-thinking U.S. citizen and these past few weeks, the rest of the world as well.
So let us, the remainder of the nation, both Democrat and Republican alike, finally acknowledge the elephant in the room. The Tea Party hates America and almost everything it stands for. You can tell by how they are doing everything they can to bring it all crashing down.
Justin Yandell is a freelance writer from Texas.