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Thomas: Tea party or 'Occupy?' Easy to spot the differences
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There are several ways that a person can tell with which of the current popular political movements — the tea party or "Occupy Wall Street" — one most identifies. As a public service, I've compiled a set of identifying characteristics to aid you in your discernment.

If you cannot afford to camp out for days or even weeks on end at a rally because, a. you have a job that requires your presence; b. you are busy looking for a job; or c. you are a student who actually attends your classes, you probably support the tea party. If you like to defecate on police cars, or paint your nude body in 1960s style psychedelic colors and designs, you probably support the "Occupy" movement.

If you know why you are attending a rally and can reasonably articulate the reason(s), you are probably at a tea party rally. If you are (if you are) at a rally (at a rally) where they mindlessly repeat (where they mindlessly repeat) everything spoken (everything spoken) like a moron (like a moron) at a cult gathering (at a cult gathering), you are at the "Occupy Atlanta" rally. Yes we can! (Yes we can!)

If someone approaches you and hands you a pocket-sized U.S. Constitution or an American flag, you are at a tea party event. If someone approaches you offering free condoms or a joint (probably not free), you are at an occupy event.

If you have bathed in a real bathroom within the last week and if, after your rally, you clean up after yourself, you're probably a tea party supporter. If your protest site "smells like a sewer" (as Britain's Daily Mail reported), you're at the "Occupy New York" protest.

If your protest includes singing the national anthem, reciting the pledge of allegiance and/or the Lord's Prayer, or Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the USA" being loudly broadcast, you are attending a tea party event. If your gathering includes several Hollywood leftists, bussed-in union members and recruited homeless in order to "swell the ranks" (as reported by the Washington Post's Dana Milbank), you are at an occupy rally.

If you and your fellow protestors recognize and celebrate the heroic acts of American soldiers, you are at a tea party event. If your camp is infiltrated by party goers celebrating acts of sex and drug abuse (as the Daily Mail reported), you are at an occupy event.

It is rather refreshing, if not also a bit shocking, to see such liberal values so prominently displayed. It paints a rather clear picture for any American who is in doubt about which movement is more in line with his or her values.

What a dilemma for the Democrats! On the one hand, they must pay homage and attempt to sympathize with the "Occupy" loons, who are a significant part of their base. But on the other hand, democrats know (surely they know) that a significant majority of U.S. voters rejects the "values" (forget the ideas, because there really aren't any) that are flaunted at these protests.

What's more, many of the occupy protestors are hardly what one could consider oppressed or down-trodden. Several were photographed wearing designer clothes and sporting the latest electronic gadgets. Also, as one paper reported, "youngsters ... have joined the movement, many of whom study at colleges which cost their parents up to $200,000."

Another bit of irony that seems to be lost on most of the "occupiers" is that Barack Obama received about twice as much in campaign contributions from Wall Street in the 2008 presidential campaign as did John McCain.

However, the most ironic, and moronic, thing about the occupy movement is that the vast majority of those involved seek to place more power in the hands of those who were most instrumental in our economic collapse: the federal government. As Herman Cain pointed out, "You can demonstrate all you want on Wall Street. The problem is 1600 Pennsylvania Ave."

Trevor Grant Thomas is a Hall County resident and frequent columnist.

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