More of us should get involved in trying to get these kind of messages across to the misinformed and manipulated Tea Party crowd. See if we can get them to think about the fact that they are acting against the best interests of themselves, their children and their grandchildren by whatever means it takes. Most people really don't want to hurt their children or grandchildren.
I don't know that I agree with the rest of Thom's message I don't think ignorance of the facts is at the core, hate is.
A lot of them are just amusing, confused and misguided. There's a difference between stupidity and ignorance. If we won't talk to them and introduce them to Progressive ideas and persuasion, who will?
If you haven't experienced lively discussions with these sorts of folks, you don't know what you are missing but I am not conflict averse or uncomfortable with who I am and what I believe or afraid to say it.
I was talking with my rightwinger brother this past week. We don't talk often. My approach had always been pretty gentle whenever the conversation got around to politics. I was watching Battle in Seattle at the moment and told him it was probably not the best time to talk but we talked for maybe an hour. I was worked up by the movie and warned him but just told him bluntly all the things I was thinking of. When he talked with my wife, he said some weird things to her that made me think I actually broke through. I could be wrong, we'll see. I know, I am rambling but years of gentle persuasion made practically no difference. Maybe the time was right.
His party has gone batshit crazy after all. Any sane person still a member of that party should be ashamed of themselves.
Anyway, we have to engage people whose opinions differ from ours and we cannot be afraid we will hurt their feelings or be bruised ourselves. Sometimes aggressive approaches break through all the defensive bullshit. I realize there are a lot of people who this won't work with for a variety of reasons. That's ok.
And, I'd like to add this. Happy Easter all!
Easter is not a time for groping through dusty, musty tomes or tombs to disprove spontaneous generation or even to prove life eternal. It is a day to fan the ashes of dead hope, a day to banish doubts and seek the slopes where the sun is rising, to revel in the faith which transports us out of ourselves and the dead past into the vast and inviting unknown.