Dana Loesch: Tea parties mean we are at war 

During a CPAC panel on tea parties, St. Louis, Mo., blogger/radio host Dana Loesch (who also helped organize a number of tea party events) insisted that "we are at war." Further, she noted, that we have to stop being so polite.

What I love about conservatives is that we're so polite. But you can throw manners out the window when we are trying to save Liberty. We have an ACORN problem in St. Louis. We have a lot of purple shirts in St. Louis. We have lots of bars that are infested by liberals. Go there and talk about how you love the Constitution and Ronald Reagan.

She went on to talk about her and her husband going to dinner, and engaging diners at nearby tables whose conversations they overhear, with which they disagree.

This is, of course, activist sentiment, but this is a veritable minefield when viewed from the outside. Being polite doesn't mean being passive, but interrupting dinner conversations in restaurants is no way to turn the tide. In fact, clashing with the left in this manner may be the most unproductive method of "winning hearts and minds."

For example: There is a difference between a column recycling well-known tropes about liberal media bias and criticizing Democrats for their love of big government and a column that draws upon data to show the stimulus didn't work despite bureaucrat promises, or a column that sheds light on financial reports from ACORN.

The former sounds like blowing steam. The latter is changing minds and informing the masses.

Loesch knows her stuff, yes, and certainly these aren't mutually exclusive. She goes out there and helps motivate people to speak out. But the approach she suggests in this particular talk could easily be mistaken for a rallying cry for angry yelling. She must realize that when it comes to making change, it's not about who yells loudest, but who actually makes people want to listen.

Claiming that the tea parties and conservative activists have declared war on the left only serves to marginalize the right. The tea parties are a counter-revolution against the attempts of the left to overturn the very limited government tradition that makes our nation unique. The left is radical. Not the tea parties.

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