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Ohio Tea Party Organizer Can't Find his Gun or his Brain: Inquire Within.
CorehealerThe ApothecaryThe softer edge of the universe.Registered Userregular
That would be the Springboro, Ohio Tea Party's official Twitter page, updated on March 21st by one of their organizers, Sonny Thomas. He seems to have misplaced his firearms, and isn't very happy about it. Here's the full story behind his tweet:
The Dayton Daily News reports that controversial tweets on the Twitter page of the local Springboro Tea Party have “triggered cancellations by several local and statewide candidates and elected officials” who were scheduled to speak at an upcoming Ohio Tea Party rally. Most of the cancellations appear to be in response to one specific tweet posted on March 21st.
The tweet, posted by the group’s founder, Sonny Thomas, is especially alarming considering the fact that he is a father of a son who is part Latino. “Basically, it’s like he’s saying he hates his son,” said the mother of Thomas’ son, Alana Turner. Linda Oda, a candidate for Warren County auditor who canceled her appearance at the group’s rally as a result of Thomas’ tweet, agrees. “Certainly, the tweet from Mr. Thomas in which he used a racial slur was enough for me to remove myself from any connection with him,” said Oda.
Thomas, who just recently regained visitation rights to the son he lost as a result of a domestic civil protection order filed by Turner in December 2009, blamed his troubling remarks on the Bee Gees, a rock group in the ’60s and ’70s:
“As I am a lifetime music lover of all genres, I always have some sort of song that can fit almost any occasion or situation. Coincidently the song “Spicks and Specks” by the Bee Gees had been on my player. I made the reference to the song not stopping to think of the era that it was produced and taken out of context could be offensive to some people.“
As the Plunderbund blog points out, the Bee Gees song refers to “spicks and specks” of old girlfriends, not Latinos.
Putting aside Thomas’ insulting Bee Gees-inspired racial epithet, there is absolutely no excuse for threatening violence against undocumented immigrants. Thomas has yet to offer an apology for his threatening words. Yet he isn’t the only tea party member to advocate shooting immigrants. Back in August, a right-wing protester suggested that undocumented immigrants should be sent back to their home countries with “a bullet in their head.” Tea party activists have often been caught referencing the 1787 quote by Thomas Jefferson: “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
I still can't figure out how the Tea Party is able to not only retain some sense of legitimacy as a political movement with morons like this at the helm, but also achieve a level of influence on current affairs that is both frightening and widespread. They are quite literally insane, even to the point where Fox News thinks so too:
Reporting for FoxNews.com, Cristina Corbin writes that tea party rallies have “attracted the kinds of mistruths, exaggerations and conspiracy theories that make Tea Party leaders cringe.” Corbin notes that many tea partiers believe the conspiracy that Obama “is a secret Muslim” and that “Obama wants to keep Americans unemployed so that they become dependent on government-run programs.” She then highlights some of the comments she has observed from tea partiers:
“Obama, to me, is a socialist. He’s a Muslim and all he wants to do is bankrupt us and run us into the ground,” Ken Schwalbach of Escanaba, Mich., said at a rally on Friday. […]
“What’s more disturbing is that he’s not answering them,” Tea Party member and conservative blogger Andrea Shay King said of the questions over Obama’s birthplace. […]
Ron Moore of Petoskey, Mich., said he stood firm in his belief that the Democrats’ goal was to implement “death panels” to decide who receives medical care and who does not. “They’ve already started,” he said.
To her credit, Corbin debunks many of the claims and rightly notes that these are “misinformed beliefs.” But of course, one of the primary reasons that so many of these right-wing activists believe these conspiracies is because Fox News has pushed them. For example, the “birther” conspiracy has been advanced on Fox News websites. The “death panels” myth has been advocated by Fox News personalities Peter Johnson Jr, Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Brian Kilmeade, and Michelle Malkin, among others.
Why has the Tea Party gained such prominence in the American political and social spheres and come to the point where Republicans court them for political points? How is it a man who has a partly Latino son is able to sleep at night having told the Internet how much he wants Latinos dead? What kind of logic goes into these people's decision making?
The biggest question of all, the one that a lot of the posts on this subject matter eventually come back to, and the one that underlies this and the stuff posted above, is this. Can humanity as a whole ever completely overcome this kind of blatant ignorance and ideology and stupidity? I'm hopeful, but every day I wake up and read the news and the Tea Party or some other bigot or religious fundamentalist or moron is doing something stupid without know the facts and insulting and hurting others around them. It's just mind boggling how so many people can use so little of their brains.