Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Well, duh. In Raw Story piece, Howard Dean states the obvious, but the not often said: The Tea Party is clearly an effort by people scared by the nation's growing diversity; thus, its hysteria over immigration, regardless of the real facts. I've believed this for a while now; younger generations welcome diversity and are more likely to notice the lack of it. Older generations are more likely to be scared by culture-mixing. Dean is more partisan than I am--not sure I agree with all his comments about Obama's liberal base--but I do like that he dares to speak up about Americans who fear, or have disdain for, diversity.
The tea party movement represents "the last gasp of a generation that has trouble with diversity," Howard Dean told an audience Wednesday.
The former governor of Vermont and head of the Democratic National Committee told a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor that he expects the tea party to be a powerful influence in the 2012 election as it was in the 2010 election, but he doesn't see it as the future of American politics.
"I think it's the last gasp of the 55-year-old generation, not the first gasp of a new generation," he said. "It's a group of older folks who've seen their lives change dramatically. The country's not the same ... All of a sudden its here for them and they don't know what to do ... Every morning when they see the president they're reminded that things are totally different than when they were born."
Now, if all the younger generations who helped elect him would stay focused and be a bit more patient for smart change (like Congress changing DADT, instead of the courts), we could counter this fearful movement better.
this makes so much sense to read it this way. I have been very fearful of the growing strength of the tea party, however seeing it put this way gives me hope
As a cohort of the 55-year old generation, this does not ring true for me, partly because it is a sweeping generality into which I do not fit and partly because I have seen lots of evidence of resistance to change from those both older and much younger than me. In addition, the tea party is a loose afiliation of discontents of a limited yet still substantial number of stripes and types in which there are bound to be exceptions to almost any rule other than hating taxes. That said, Dean's other part of the message - don't despair and maintain steady support for needed reforms - I simply couldn't agree more. Change can happen, and will happen, and it doesn't take an overwhelming majority, just a small but committed group leading the way and buy-in from a decent share of the middle.
Generally speaking, voters in the last election were largely over 50, FWIW. And, of course, you don't fit into it, gwilly. That doesn't mean there isn't truth to it. Think of the attitudes of adult Mississippians toward a race a generation or two ago. These things are generational, which is good news and bad news, I guess. One great thing about Generation Y is their attitudes toward diversity. It'll change the country as they get older and take over more leadership roles.