Wednesday, September 02, 2009
I ran into my old friend Charlie Teaparty the other day and he was carrying an armful of hand painted signs and had an angry expression on his face.
“Hi, Charlie. Where are you headed?”I asked.
“I’m goin’ to save this country from a national disaster,” he fumed.
“What national disaster?"
Old Charlie’s eyes narrowed to a squint. “You mean you ain’t heard about Obama tryin’ to turn us into a socialist country?”
“Are you talking about his health care proposals, Charlie?”
“ You darn tootin,”Charlie said, as he shoved a sign in front of my face. It said in crude lettering, “No Rationing! No Death Panels!”. Then, he switched to one that proclaimed,.”Hitler Were A Socialist!”
“ ‘WAS’ a socialist,” I said, pointing to the last sign.
“Well, I’m glad you agree,” Charlie replied with a touch of pride. He separated another sign that said “Don’t Mess With My Medicare!” Handing it to me he smiled, “You can take this one to the protest rally.”
I put my arms around his shoulders and explained, “Look, Charlie, none of that stuff is true. There are no ‘death panels’. They are not going to take away your medicare and Obama is not like Hitler! Where do you get his stuff?”
Charlie snatched the sign back. He squinted at me again and spoke in slow a deliberate cadence, “You don’t watch Fox News, do you? I’ll bet you don’t listen to Rush Limbaugh neither. Have you ever heard Senator Grassley speak?”
“Those are rhetorical questions, Charlie.”
“They ain’t no such things! They’s questions you don’t need to answer, ‘cause I already know the answers.”
I t was then I noticed he had something strapped to his back. “Is that an AK-47,” I asked in disbelief.
“It ain’t no popgun,” he replied.
“Why, in the name of sanity, do you need an AK-47 ?”
“Anybody who knows history kin tell you liberty needs to be reeefreshed by the blood of tyrants!”
I allowed as how I hoped he was speaking metaphorically and Charlie replied, “I only speak American.”
“And you think Obama is a tyrant, Charlie?”
Drawing himself up into what I suspect he felt was a superior posture, Charlie declared, “Well he ain’t an American. He was born in Kenya. I seen his birth certificate. It cost me some bucks but it was worth it to know the truth.”
“You have money to spend like that,” I asked.
“I have an investment that is gonna pay big dividends soon,” he confided. “I met this fella who let me get in on the ground floor of a deal to buy a bridge that will connect New York with a place called Brooklyn.”