Friday, September 17, 2010

Tea Baggers in Indian Country

In the cloak of hate, the Tea Party sanitizes racism with deception

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

It seems unlikely that the rightwing Tea Party would be seeking converts in Indian country, but that's what is happening in Montana and South Dakota. In Arizona, heavily-armed Tea Party style hunters are stalking human beings on the Arizona border.

This week, I posted this comment and question, "The Tea baggers, as they are called, are edging their way into Indian country. Any sightings?"

The first confirmation came by way of a link to Wanbli's Indigenous Rights Movement Blog Talk Radio show, about the 'Lakota Tea Party.'

As the questions rolled in about the Tea Party, I added this on Facebook, "The rhetoric is of course racist. Although many people are not happy with some, or many, of Obama's decisions, the Tea Party rhetoric often crosses the line into harsh or violent rhetoric.

"Rush Limbaugh and Arizona Gov. Janet Brewer also seem to be heroes of the Tea Party guys."

Although Native American readers seemed assured that there was no way that the Tea Party would gain a stake in Indian country, it turned out it had already happened. The Tea Party was in Crow country in Montana, and attempting to organize with Lakotas in Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

This article on the Crow Tea Party appeared in the Billings Gazette:

One person responded, "It is a tactic of the rightwingers to pit marginalized groups against one another. They want to see us fight over the scraps that the dominant culture throw us."

The majority of Tea Party members are white, protestant, conservative and rich, according to Wikipedia:

Of course, the root of the modernday Tea Party is colonization and the colonizers. Wikipedia states, "The name 'Tea Party' is a reference to the Boston Tea Party of 1773—a protest by American colonists against various acts by the British Government which, among other things, attempted to establish a monopoly on the importation of tea into the colonies by giving a cut on re-importation tax imposed on the East India Company."

It turns out that the Tea Party was already organizing in Pine Ridge.

One reader writes, "They had a tea party meeting at Pine Ridge during Oglala Lakota Nation Pow-wow. I never heard how the turn out was or what they were framing their voice around."

Then from Arizona, came these comments.

"Down here in southeastern Arizona, JT Ready and his for hire mercenaries often say the same things and he has an Apache in his group that is very confused about why he helps the damn NAZI," wrote another.

In South Dakota, Native Americans already talk of a "Tea bagger infestation."

The idea of Native Americans promoting the Tea Party, along with white conservatives, was too bizarre for most. One person e-mailed and questioned whether Native Americans are being paid to travel and organize Tea Party meetings in South Dakota and Montana.

Another person on the Navajo Nation wrote, "I smelled them at the Navajo Nation Fair, hopefully they don't spread their speechless moments to our leaders."

The "bag of brew" scent came from Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer.

It was this final video from the Sonoran Desert in Arizona that revealed how the surge in hate and racism in America, with migrant xenophobia fueled by the media and pushed by private prison lobbyists, border wall builders and security contractors, is now being manifest.

It is a video of white supremacists hunting for migrants with assault rifles on the Arizona border.

Heavily armed, they wear "Border Patrol" caps and display their cache of weapons in the Arizona desert. A confused Apache, a young man wearing the camouflage of a shrub, says he is not a white supremacist and alludes to working with a police department.

Watch the video:

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About Censored News

Censored News is published by censored journalist Brenda Norrell. A journalist for 27 years, Brenda lived on the Navajo Nation for 18 years, writing for Navajo Times, AP, USA Today, Lakota Times and other American Indian publications. After being censored and then terminated by Indian Country Today in 2006, she began the Censored Blog to document the most censored issues. She currently serves as human rights editor for the U.N. OBSERVER & International Report at the Hague and contributor to Sri Lanka Guardian, Narco News and CounterPunch. She was cohost of the 5-month Longest Walk Talk Radio across America, with Earthcycles Producer Govinda Dalton in 2008:
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