I interviewed a number of participants of the July 4 Tea Party in Arvada, Colorado. Hear what they have to say:
Jon Caldara gave the keynote speech:
Matt Arnold of Clear the Bench Colorado outlined his case for voting against retention of four Colorado Supreme Court Justices:
Here are a few additional photos:
I’ve heard estimates of a thousand participants. I imagine attendance was lower than at the Tax Day Tea Party because more people were at local events and many were busy with family gatherings.
It was a fun time. I helped hand out a couple hundred Ayn Rand Samplers and a few hundred “Clear the Bench” flyers.
The most troubling aspect of the event is that various speakers really laid on the religion. It was almost as much of a church service as a political rally. I heard quite a lot of the same crazy talk that cost Republicans control of government in the first place. While we heard from Jefferson’s Declaration, we heard nothing about Jefferson’s wall of separation between church and state. But religious tyranny is hardly an improvement upon leftist tyranny. For example, those who endorse the “personhood” measure next year are as much the enemy of liberty as are those who advocate socialized medicine, for reasons stated.
Yet some of the speeches were great; see Jon Caldara’s speech above. And the people who attended went for their own reasons. One lady told me she was “pro-life” (i.e., an advocate of abortion bans), and at least two people carried signs proclaiming that America is a Christian nation. Yet most people I talked with were there for the obvious reasons: federal politicians are spending our money like drunken sailors and seizing control of broad swaths of the economy.
The right obviously still suffers from the schism that resulted in its downfall; it is torn between those who would impose their sectarian dogmas by force of law and those who advocate individual rights and a government devoted to protecting those rights. That intellectual battle continues to rage.
Yet I see many signs that more and more citizens are taking up the banner of individual rights.