Picking up an interesting little story that seemed to have slipped through the cracks last week, the NYT’s Ross Douthat writes:
A month ago, a U.C.L.A. graduate student named Emily Ekins spent hours roaming a Tea Party rally on the Washington Mall, photographing every sign she saw… Last week, The Washington Post reported on her findings: just 5 percent of the 250 signs referenced Barack Obama’s race or religion, and 1 percent brought up his birth certificate. The majority focused on bailouts, deficits and spending — exactly the issues the Tea Partiers claim inspired their movement in the first place.
Douthat looks at why the liberal mind is so desperate to paint the Tea Partiers as racist, or astroturfed, or John Birchers, or whatever comforting excuse is needed to soothe the pain. It can’t be that the Tea Partiers are exactly what they claim to be, for exactly the reasons they claim to have, because that would mean a wholesale rejection of Obama and everything he stands for. And who in their right mind could possibly believe that?
We’ll see in a couple of weeks.