Racists and Extremists and Teabaggers – Oh My!

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by Ruthie Thompson

“The reason Ted Cruz stood up and asked for a delay was so that he could have a vote during today where his … the teabaggers in his tea party were going to watch.” Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)

Sen. Mikulski blasted these colorful words on the Senate floor in response to those of us who cheered Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) for his 21 hour unofficial filibuster against funding ObamaCare. This language is typical with the likes of Bill Maher and Chris Matthews, but it hardly seems appropriate coming from a woman who was elected by people who chose her to represent them.

Although Obama appears to have a lot of support from the Left on the funding of ObamaCare, not all of those who oppose it are Republicans. In fact, many Unions have come out to publicly oppose it as the October 1st open enrollment deadline draws near and they are some of the biggest supporters of the Democrat Party. I’m wondering if they will also take offense at Senator Mikulski’s comment; after all, it appears that anyone who supported Senator Cruz has been deemed a Teabagger by her (and others).

Where does it end? I remember the very first time in my life when I was called a racist. (Mind you, I am no spring chicken either.) It was in 2008 during campaign season when it became official that Barack Obama would face John McCain in the fight for the office of the President. I was having coffee with my friend Jackie who early on appeared to be leaning on the fence regarding which candidate would get her vote. Apparently she had listened to a few of Obama’s speeches and to my dismay, she was suddenly part of a movement that would sweep the nation and elect then-Senator Barack Obama as president. She knew nothing about him, couldn’t name one of his accomplishments and had no knowledge of his voting record during the short time that he was in office. Her only defense was that she “liked what he said” and that she was tired of the “rich” Republicans and their “disregard for the poor”. I remember asking her what she knew of him and what experience he may have had that would qualify him for the job. It seemed that the more I pressed her, the more defensive she became. I reminded her that Hitler gave good speeches and history will tell you what happens when you follow a man who only tells you what you want to hear. Unfortunately, that must have been the straw that broke the camel’s back because the next words out of my friend’s mouth were accusations that I was a racist, merely because I didn’t like her candidate! I couldn’t believe that I was actually being accused of such a thing, simply for asking what I believed to be some very important questions. Since that time, I have been called a racist numerous times and it has always involved a disagreement I have had with one or more of Obama’s policies.

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