Sunday, September 13, 2009

Huge tea party in Washington, D.C.

The liberal media admit that there were tens of thousands of people. But the starting area filled up before the official starting time, so they started early. Other sources estimate 350,000 to over 1,000,000 in attendance. Photo source. Liberty Belle; her report. NPR National Public Radio:
As the demonstrators walked along Pennsylvania Avenue toward the U.S. Capitol, the line stretched as far as the eye could see in either direction. The crowd was so thick in places that it was difficult to move. People like Jenni Goyet, a mother of two from Virginia Beach, Va., say they came for a whole range of issues. "Health care for one, government spending all of our money on stuff that we're not approving them to spend it on. I have a 7- and a 4-year-old, and they have a lot of debt already, and they shouldn't have that," Goyet says.
Agence France-Presse at Yahoo News
They carried hand-painted posters protesting Obama's proposed health care reforms and accusing his administration of leading the United States down the road to socialism. "Abortion is not healthcare," read one sign. Another, held aloft by an immigrant from Ukraine, said: "I had enough of socialism in the USSR." The demonstrator, who refused to give his name, said he had come to Washington from Baltimore because "too many things remind me of what I saw in the communist countries. "Communism didn't work over there and it's not going to work over here," he told AFP.
Associated Press
Terri Hall, 45, of Starke, Fla., said she felt compelled to become political for the first time this year because she was upset by government spending. "Our government has lost sight of the powers they were granted," she said. She added that deficit spending is out of control, and said she thought it was putting the country at risk.
Seattle Times carries the report from the New York Times:
Race became an issue when a black Republican leader denounced African-American politicians who she said had an "affinity" for socialism. "I'm outraged prominent black politicians use the race card" to cover up their failed policies, said Deneen Borelli of New York. One woman held a sign with images of Martin Luther King Jr. and Obama, with the words printed alongside: "He had a dream, we got a nightmare." Other demonstrators did not focus on Obama but rather on the government at large.
Eyewitness account by Mark Hemingway at National Review Online
As a journalist who wears his cynicism like a badge of honor, to say that today's tea party protest wildly exceeded my expectations would be an understatement. I've yet to see a reliable estimate of the crowd size and the cops seemed bound and determined to keep any photographers away from any high vantage points, but I'd be shocked if it wasn't well into six figures. I've heard crowd-size estimates ranging from 350,000 to 1.5 million — the latter seems overly optimistic, but even the former figure would still be incredibly impressive.... So many people showed up they couldn't contain everybody in the plaza, so they just started the march early to make room. As for the composition of the crowd, well I personally spoke to people from Ohio, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Idaho, Alaska, Delaware, Tennessee, Nevada, California, Montana, as well as Virginia and Maryland, natch. (And I'm probably forgetting a few.) What also bears noting is that a lot of people came by bus — and of the people that came to the march by bus, alomst all came on privately chartered buses organized by someone they knew. I asked one guy, who came up from South Carolina with 160 people on three buses, who put his trip together. He laughed and said, "My neighbor." Can we drive a stake through the astroturf claim now? Another interesting detail about the march — it was filled with immigrants. I'm pretty sure every Cuban in a thousand mile radius was there, helpfully explaining to everyone who would listen that Cuba's vaunted free health care system involves shoddily trained doctors and bringing your own linen to the hospital. I also spoke to angry immigrants from England and Ireland, appalled the country was slouching toward socialized medicine. But perhaps the most interesting thing about the crowd was how friendly and civil it was. It was also a fun crowd — to the well endowed redhead in the "Boobs Czar" T-shirt, I doff my cap to you m'lady. There was some concern that media attention would focus on a few fringe cranks. Well, out of what had to be hundreds of thousands, I saw two, count 'em, birther signs in hours of wandering around. (I did, however, see one person holding up a sign expressing concern about "Merovingians" running the country. With birthers and truthers, I didn't know there were still that many people concerned about the illuminati — old skool conspiracy theorizin' represent!) But overall it was an undeniably sober and informed crowd, especially in comparison to your standard left-liberal protest march. These people have jobs, are infuential in their communities and you can be darn sure they plan on voting next November.
Local 9/12 events? If you attended a local event please post a comment.

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