WASHINGTON, DC (March 26, 2010) - The coalition that forms "Take The Town Halls To Washington " worked last week to get more than 30,000 Americans from across the country into to Washington DC in a last-ditch effort to be heard by their elected leaders. That afternoon, rally demonstrators gathered at the Cannon building to express their disagreement with their Congressmen as they returned from the first of three votes that day.
On the way to the Cannon building, a contingent of Congressional Black Congress members Cleaver, Carson, and Lewis reported they were the victim of vicious racial slurs as they walked through the crowd of demonstrators. Congressman Cleaver even reported he was spat upon.
Tea party people in attendance, rightly shocked, immediately began to review their video. They called each other, asking, "Did you hear anything? Did you see anything?" Then the answers starting coming back: no, nope, I got nothing, I didn't see anything, I didn't hear anything... There are more people to talk to and more video to review, but as of this writing, absolutely no corroborating account, photo, video, or audio has been identified by any person, whether tea partier, passerby, police, reporter or other congressman.
As a direct result of the CBC members' allegations and subsequent unquestioned reporting by media, fellow Congressmen leapt to the floor of the House of Representatives to condemn the racially charged epithets allegedly launched by the Tea Party demonstrators and to hurl their own sexually charged epithets back at the protestors.
We agree that there can be no tolerance of any discourse that threatens personal safety or degrades into racially or sexually charged comments. We have pushed back on the left's attempt to use derogatory and pornographic images to label the tea party, we have pushed back when we were threatened during the town halls and we will push back when we are falsely accused of actions not clearly identified with tea party participants.
Conservative principles call for reasoned dialogue and respectful passion. The Democrats have ignored the people and have inflamed their constituents. We call on all parties to reject hate speech, derogatory caricatures and any threats of harm to property or people. We can only assume that the recent attacks against the tea party – without any evidence that the tea party was involved in any alleged incident – has more to do with the success of the tea party in inspiring the American people than in any sincere desire to make known any dangerous words or acts.
Even so, the people of the tea party movement are eager to find and identify any person who may have made deplorable and unacceptable attacks that the CBC members describe. And we are committed to hold ourselves and the left accountable to the standards of reasoned discourse.