Here are some early thoughts about yesterday's Tea Party:
1. No concerted effort was made to identify the attendees and capture contact information. John Locke and Americans for Prosperity did announce sign up tables for information from their organizations, but no one captured the Tea Party crowd.
It would have been a good thing to have asked everyone to take out their cell phones and send a text message. Asked for some coded content:
- Name; whatever you are comfortable sharing - first and last, first only, alias
- How did you hear about the event?
b=smelled the barbecue and came up to see what was going on
- Would you be willing to become involved in working to achieve our common goals. Could be canvassing, calling, stuffing envelopes, contributing, etc. Text 'yes' or 'no'
2. Would have liked to hear a reference to the Obama personal pledge drive and then a statement that we were also going to take a pledge (Shocked silence from crowd), followed by, "I pledge allegiance to the flag..."
3. This is the South. Speakers were good, but they wore suits for the most part and were pros in the political arena. We need that, but being Southerners, we want a little more revival atmosphere. Think old time Southern political gatherings. A little fire breathing, a lot of working up and calls for action. Maybe some tar warming up on the fire next to the BBQ. :-)
4. The people that attended were already believers. We need to reach out and touch the folks who are not yet believers, but who might be. The ones who are afraid for their future and their family's future. The ones whose savings have vanished, who are facing years more of work rather than retirement, the ones who sweat the mortgage payment they have been making comfortably for years, the hard-working people who are trying to turn their sweat into a comfortable life for their family, but who are now facing the prospect of paying for a radical progressive agenda instead.
We don't need to preach to the choir, we need to get out and take the message to the people.
5. We need to remember that a lot of people will never come around to our point of view and that's all right. Obama won with 53% of the vote. In reality, what took him over the top in the Electoral College was probably less than that. We just have to recruit enough people to turn the corner. The key to that is getting the message out to people. If they get their news, like 80% of Americans, from the local newspaper and TV station, then they don't know what is going on. They can't, because they are not hearing it. We have to get the word out and it has to be authentic. Not fear mongering, not he said/she said, but real hard news from sources not covered locally.