Yesterday our congressional representative's brother had the gas line at his house cut. The representative's brother, sister-in-law, and two daughters were home at the time. Allegedly a leader of the Lynchburg Tea Party posted on his blog what he thought was the representative's address with the encouragement for Tea Party activists to "drop by." The FBI is currently investigating the incident.
This is just one incident of many, including more than 10 death threats, that we have seen since the passing of the health care reform bill. Many of these incidents have been racist in nature, begging the question, are these people really upset about health care reform or are they just racist and this seems to be the platform for expressing those sentiments?
While I am hopeful about the way we are heading in terms of policy, I am more concerned than ever about the tone and intensity of the rhetoric. More precisely, I am concerned about the incivility that seems to be condoned, and even practiced, by the Republican leadership.
Regardless of one's opinion of a bill, civility should not be abandoned in the effort to express that opinion.
The other concern I have, and have had for quite some time, is that people complaining about the bill haven't read the bill but just parrot what they hear, e.g., Obama's socialist agenda, death panels, etc. I contend that if you don't want to live in a socialist state here are a few things you can boycott to prove your point:
- Social Security
- Police, fire and emergency services
- Roads and highways
- Public museums
- State and national parks
- Unemployment insurance
- Food items, especially those inspected by the Department of Agriculture
- Grand Canyon
- Statue of Liberty
- Public schools, including state universities
- Public parks and beaches
- Sesame Street
- Public water and sewer services
- the list goes on . . .