Emperorjones, my purpose in raising the "infiltrator" matter, something not made up by the Right, but reported by AP as well as other Media outlets, was to get a sense what folks on the forum think about such tactics.
As to the Town Hall Meetings you mention: The purpose of a town hall meeting is for people to express their viewpoints and ask hard questions and respond negatively if the answer is bullsh*t. They are not just PR opportunities for Members of Congress. By the same token, real journalistic interviews of politicians are not a series of softball questions followed by opportunities for the politician to rattle off talking points and evasive answers. Real journalists keep asking the question, or keep the politician on topic, when the politician is being evasive. This goes for all politicians, including the President.
If at all, I will discuss the article written by CNN Political Producer Shannon Travis on the other thread, where I posted that article. Though some reference to it will no doubt come out here.
You point out that the Tea Party Protesters you met on the Metro were, in fact, "personally gracious and respectful." I appreciate your honestly in pointing that out. Why can't you just leave it at that? Why must you throw in "perhaps they thought I was going to rob them." This reveals exactly the attitude that Travis is talking about -- the adherence to prejudiced stereotypes.
The Tea Party Movement does have members of all races participate, though the fact that black participation is smaller than that in the general population only establishes that the overwhelming number of African-Americans support Obama. Which is not surprising, given that he is the first black President of the United States. On top of that, black Conservatives are ostracized, vilified, called vile names, by many black activists and so-called "black leaders," as you well know, making it an act of courage for them to participate in Tea Party Rallies (and perhaps discouraging some from participating; of course most white Conservatives don't actually participate in the rallies either, because it is just hard to get busy people to go to public rallies). Look at the snapshots taken at the rally in L.A. that my son attended, as an example.
I find it amusing that whenever people on the Left express strong opinions, they are described as "passionate" or "outraged" or "expressing solidarity" etc ... but whenever Conservatives express strong opinions, the Media simply describes them as "angry." A line you parrot here. The line MSNBC parroted about John McCain, that he was an "angry man, a bitter man." Why angry? All because he expressed criticism of President Obama's nuclear summit. "Angry." Might this reflect bias in the Mainstream Media?
I've never denied that some involved with the Tea Party movement might in part be motivated by race. But not most. Were Obama doing the same things, but were he white, I believe we would see the outgrowth of a grassroots movement like the Tea Party Movement. Obama's election proved the value of a strong grassroots movement. The Tea Party Movement is not a movement focused on race. It is not, as Keith Olberman describes it, the "Tea Klux Klan." It is focused on the size and self-destructive unprecedented growth of Government, at the national, state, and local levels, that augers disastrous consequences in the future for our nation. Growth advocated by Barack Obama, as a man of the Left, who very much wishes to push America in that direction of greater government economic domination. It is not fueled by "white male anger" but rather by serious concern, indeed fear, that our country is being economically destroyed, with unsustainable mountains of debt and irremediable deficits, that over the long term will hamper economic development and military preparedness. That the lives of our children and their children will be far far worse off as a result, and that the world will be a far worse place as a result. I believe all these concerns are well founded.
As to your comments directed at me: I have objected to any expressions of racism. Now, some comments or signs that are critical of Obama or are presented as parody, may be "offensive" to some African-Americans, even though they are no more offensive than similar portrayals of George W. Bush by the Left at their rallies, but some African-Americans may take special offense because they so strongly support Barack Obama and may be particularly sensitive because he is black. That said, statements or signs that contain clear racial slurs are outright wrong. I cannot state that more clearly. You must realize, however, that the Tea Party Movement is a grassroots movement and that most in that movement strongly support the First Amendment and the Constitution as a whole. Thus, my understanding is that people prepare their own signs. On a Tea Party websight that suggests text of signs, I saw no reference to race whatsoever. All the references were to Obamacare, Socialism, the Size of Government, etc. But some folk make up their own text, and a minute fraction may be objectionable by any standard. We don't know if anything has been said to someone with a really stupid-ass sign, by someone else at a rally (but be that as it may, my understanding is that there is no "central authority" that is empowered to censor signs at these rallies). Those few truly offensive signs are the ones that are replayed and redisplayed over and over and over again on the Internet, creating false impressions that Shannon Travis says are reinforcing prejudiced stereotypes against the vast majority of folk who participate in Tea Party Rallies (and for that matter, against Conservatives as a whole). Your comments, and insistent negative spin, reflect this prejudice as well. Which, I believe is, for all on the Left, in part politically motivated. A clear tactic to divert people from the real issues, in an attempt to marginalize the vast majority of folk who are raising legitimate concerns at these rallies.
waiting for folk on the Left to take responsibility for their conduct over the past decade, up to the present time. Haha, well, I'm really not.