For months I have been reading letters and seeing ads condemning candidates for being part of the Tea Party. These letters and ads make it seem that Tea Party membership forces people to grow horns, become racists, turn to devil worship and all sorts other nasty things.
I have considered myself a Tea Partyer for years now and as yet have found no horns; I am not a racist and still consider myself to be a God-fearing American. I believe that if people understood what Tea Party membership really means they would probably find that they too have been members without realizing it.
What do Tea Party members actually believe? We believe in smaller, limited federal government. We believe in the Constitution. We believe in the indomitable American spirit and ability. This is not to say the disadvantaged should not be cared for; only that the federal government should not do it.
Within our Constitution there are powers enumerated for all to see. Beyond these, all powers are reserved for the states and citizens. Over the years the federal government has gradually expanded its reach until it now extends its tentacles into our bedrooms, boardrooms, finances and even the speed limits on our highways. They try to control the food we eat and the air we breathe. Their regulations strangle businesses and force the citizenry to purchase products and services we don't want and don't need.
Finally, the Tea Party is not an actual party; it is a group people with similar beliefs and similar goals. The Tea Party, therefore, is for Democrats and Republicans. So if you believe in the Constitution, equal opportunity for all and limited government, you are a Tea Party member. Welcome!