Sometimes, it’s fun to be mad. Once, I was so upset I actually got off my couch and drove downtown to take part in a peaceful demonstration. As soon as I was plunged in the middle of so many like-minded individuals, I got a contact high. Feeling mistreated by the police or slighted by the press only bonds you closer to your compatriots and reinforces your resolve. While I personally never felt like I accomplished much by protesting, it must be satisfying to feel like you’ve managed to move the needle.
The Tea-Partiers are feeling the power of being a part of a national movement that has already had a significant impact on the political landscape. This may be a new experience for many of them. 79% of the Tea Party are white, 75% are over 45 years old, and over 54% are Republican (41% are Independent). Most in this demographic were not participating in freedom marches or sit-ins. Over their lifetimes, they haven’t had a whole lot to be upset about, but now they’re mad as hell and they’re not going to take it any more. (more…)