I have just returned from a Tea Party Coalition meeting in South Carolina. Yes, in spite of my fragile health (recovering from the flu), my husband and I traveled 4 1/2 hours and spent 3 days to participate in an event made up of patriots and concerned citizens. (I am still recovering and tired, but doing much better.) Speakers with national stature provided witness to the audience of the madness we are seeing. Mind you, affirming fears is not a pleasant experience. However, finding many others who are bravely standing up and fighting back is an affirmation, too. We do have kindred spirits among us. Below is my report from this meeting.

One prevailing thing I took away from the meeting is the general message that Washington D.C. is lost, at least for now. And that both political parties are involved in incremental destruction of the Constitution and the United States of America as we have known it. These messages come from national leadership fellows, PhD's., men and women in policy positions and think tanks. Let those thoughts run around your mind for a few minutes before you read further.

There were speakers on national security threats from without and within, border (lack of) security, Islam infiltration, Mexican cartels, et al. There were speakers on entitlement programs and the so called, inaptly named, "Affordable Healthcare Act." There were speakers on the free market system. There were speakers on the attack on property rights through Agenda 21 / Sustainable Development. There were speakers on the 2nd Amendment. There was one especially touching speech by a former Navy Seal who bravely is stepping up in his own way to rally the civilian troops to save our nation. It was two days of non-stop information sharing. You can find the speeches here, if you are interested in what was said. And by the way, Nikki Haley, Governor of South Carolina gave a video presentation that is worth your time to watch. She was eloquent and impressive.

The overwhelming aspect of each of those subjects is that each of them, by itself, is an existential threat to us. When you take them one at a time, you might think we can fix something. When you add them all up into the toxic soup we are digesting every day, you might get so despondent you find yourself paralyzed with fear. We are under threats from our own government and from foreign enemies. This may have been somewhat the case during the Civil War, but not since then has America been under this kind of existential threat to our nation's survival.

The other prevalent message that I came away with was, because Washington D.C. has turned to the dark side (so to speak), and because both parties are working against us, the only avenue of possible success for us is to get involved with local and state politics. As some of you know, that is what I have been doing for the past 3 or 4 years. If you want to survive as the United States of America, you must find your way into the faces of the City Council, the County Commissioners, and the State legislators who represent you. This is the imperative. If you have a particular skill or professional knowledge that can lend education to those in elected office, you need to communicate that to them. And if they won't listen, you need to work your tail off to find other candidates and remove from office those who are undermining our Constitutional rights. You can do this. Stop thinking of elected officials as being on a higher plane than you ....they work for us, for you! They are employees!!!

That may sound simplistic. It also may seem like the long road. And there is a question of whether or not we even have time left to do what needs to be done. But we are down to the nubs. It is us or them. It is now or never. It is federal tyranny or individual rights. It is the Weimar Republic or the United States of America.

As my husband and I drove home we talked over what we learned and our views. We find ourselves in a very difficult situation for another reason. We are standing in the gap, to use the Biblical reference. Today, I describe the gap as between the masses of low information voters who need education, and on the other side of us are the purveyors of tyranny who need to be taken out of power. That means we are the sane middle. We are not the extreme, as the leftist media portrays us. We are the middle, getting squeezed by the other two extremes. Several mentions were made at the SC Coalition meeting regarding the media and what to do to get our message to those low information voters. To some great degree we are creating our own media, but still reaching the choir. We have to figure out a way to reach those low information voters in a way that they can understand. I can't say I have an easy answer for that at this moment, but it is something those of us working in the blogosphere need to consider.

As for me, I have made efforts to have a good relationship with my local newspaper. That newspaper does print my opinion pieces in a prominent place in their paper. I appreciate them and tell them so. I back up my opinion editorials with facts. I cite sources. I let them know I am not just whistling Dixie, that I mean business. I proof-read and have others proof-read my editorials for errors. I also send those editorials to my city council and county commissioners and mayor. When appropriate, I send those editorials to my state representatives as well. You can do this.

Well, there is my take-away from the South Carolina Tea Party Coalition Convention. I hope you find it helpful. The speakers we saw have books and information you can glean from their websites and organizations. Here is a list of my favorites from the meeting:

Tom DeWeese, American Policy Center
Michael Coffman, Environmental Perspectives, Inc., Sovereignty International
Yaron Brook, Ayn Rand Institute
C.L. Gray, Physicians For Reform
Mark Mix, National Right To Work Legal Defense Foundation
Frank Gaffney, Center for Security Policy
John Fund, Columnist for the Wall Street Journal
Mike Cutler, Center for Immigration Studies

Added note from Lloyd Marcus: THE TEA PARTY CAN NOT GO AWAY

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