We’re still waiting for all the facts about today’s shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords and others in Tucson, Arizona. But that hasn’t stopped liberals in the media from speculating that the “Tea Party” movement is to blame. Even the New York Times, which is supposedly a respected news source and should know better, has a few paragraphs at the end of the first page of this article, trying to link this shooting, by implication, to opposition to Obamacare.
Leave aside the fact that the same liberals in the media routinely refuse to link acts of terrorism to Islam. The fact is that Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism, is the fundamental at the root of the Tea Party movement, its “but-for” cause, whether many conservatives like to acknowledge it or not. Rick Santelli, who, perhaps not intentionally, started the Tea Party with this rant on CNBC, said, “At the end of the day, I’m an Ayn Rander.”
*Atlas Shrugged Spoiler Alert*
And, what did the heroes of Ayn Rand’s magnum opus, Atlas Shrugged, do to register their protest against the immoral, welfare-state policies of the government in the novel? Did they pull out their guns and start shooting up Congressmen or other politicians and bureaucrats? No, they SHRUGGED. They did not initiate force or engage in violent revolution. They simply withdrew from society, taking their tremendous productive ability with them.
So, if people understand the proper root of the Tea Party movement, which is a political philosophy based on respect for individual rights, a philosophy that condemns the initiation of force in all its forms, they will understand that any attempt to blame a senseless, violent attack on that movement, is absurd.
UPDATE: There are now reports coming in saying that the shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, is actually more of a communist or fascist, and not a Tea Partier at all. You can see his lovely “videos” on YouTube, here. Even if it does turn out that he self-identifies as a Tea Partier, a fan of Sara Palin, an opponent of Obamacare, etc., etc., my point is that his actions fly in the face of the fundamental philosophical idea at the core of the Tea Party movement: a principled defense of individual rights. (If you go to his YouTube profile, you will see that one of the wide variety of books he lists as favorites is Ayn Rand’s We the Living. *Spoiler* The heroine of that novel didn’t engage in violent uprising against the government, either.)