This past week I volunteered at the Whatcom Tea Party (WTP) booth at the Northwest Washington Fair (NWWF). As always there were many citizen’s who passed through with family and friends to check for themselves on what’s the Tea Party all about? Well of course there were lots of brochures, posters, yard signs, bumper stickers, pins, games and prizes…all centered around the Constitution of the United States. The most popular item being handed out to fair-goers were pocket constitutions, especially after they’d tested their ability to answer the same constitutional questions required for U.S. citizenship.
Thanks to Greg and Karen Brown, and Terry Cox, the WTP booth featured some of the funniest games at the Fair. There was a spinning wheel that lands on easy, medium and hard questions to be asked of the spinner. Questions on the U.S. Constitution, and if you’re really lucky it might land on a We the People sticker to win a U.S. Flag. Another winning idea from Greg, Karen and Terry was the Nerf shooting gallery, where everyone had the opportunity to aim and shoot at what the WTP call, invasive species like; IRS targeting Private Citizens, NSA spying, Benghazi-gate, Anti-gun Rights Legislation, Plastic Bag Bans and many other signature items…the target which received the most attention and had to be replaced twice was Obamacare, which was aimed and fired upon as they proclaimed; “I hate Obamacare!”
My first shift was Wednesday evening from 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm, and it poured down rain most of the evening. Well, that evening a young man stopped by the booth whom I recognized as the infamous “Tea Party Crasher,” from numerous rallies that the WTP held on the Guide and at our Flag Day celebrations. As he looked over our material I said Hi!, asked him how he was doing and what does he do when he’s not crashing Tea Party events? His reply surprised me a bit, and this is not a direct quote, but it is close; “It concerns me that I look at your shooting gallery wall and I agree with almost everything you have on it.” My response to him was, “That’s no surprise to me. There’s really not a lot of difference between people. There’s a lot of hype they’ve used to divide us. The WTP simply asks that we return to the principles of smaller government and fiscal policies that are sustainable and constitutionally authorized.” During our conversation we discussed what he’s currently involved in; which is supporting and working for the Democrat Party, working at and for a temporary work facility, while going to Whatcom Community College. He shared his love for Anthropology and his desire to find gainful employment in Anthropology, after graduation. Yes, he fully understands that Anthropology will be a difficult field to find employment. We discussed our thoughts on many of the items listed on the shooting gallery targets and although I probably didn’t change his political affiliation, or he mine, it was good to have a respectful exchange of what forms our principles and political make-up.
All this fun aside, there was a common theme spoken by everyone who stopped by and that is; “What is the Tea Party doing? What’s going on with our government? Everything’s such a mess!” Well, if you’re not already aware of it, the Whatcom Tea Party theme this year is “Just Show Up.” What does that mean? It means that if we want to change things, then all you have to do is show up at your Council meetings, public events, political party meetings, political forums and yes, even Tea Party events. It is when We the People show up that real change will happen.
~ Kris Halterman
Theme 2013: Just Show Up!
To help solve the problem, the Whatcom Tea Party 2013 theme is, Just Show Up! You’ll be seeing that tag line in our literature, and at our events.
Show up where? At Whatcom Tea Party events of course! But also at city and county council, boards and commission meetings, the list goes on… You don’t even have to say anything, Just Show Up! Government officials, just knowing they’re being watched, change their behavior.
It’s easy to get on a first name basis with your local reps. Think about it: They can’t represent our point of view if they don’t even know we exist!
If you really want to show up, run for office! It’s not for everyone, but one on the council is worth 200 in the bush