Occupy v. Tea Party: A Lesson in Protest

The First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States guarantees the protection of “the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” In other words, we do have the right to non-violently protest.  However, because of activists like Van Jones and his admiration of conservative strategy, it is important to note the philosophical, political, and practical differences between the Tea Party Movement and Occupy Wall Street.

The Tea Party Movement started in 2009 in response to the irresponsibility of the Obama Administration, starting with bank bailouts and a hefty stimulus package in 2008.  They saw the infiltration of progressive monetary policy in the United States, and attempted to draw attention to the danger of big government. Over the course of 2009 and 2010, Tea Partiers rallied in cities across the country to show disdain for current policies and events, and to rouse support to further the political influence of Tea Party-supported politicians such as Scott Brown (R-MA).  While major conservative politicians and organizations such as FreedomWorks, Governor Sarah Palin, and Glenn Beck support the grassroots movement, former Texas congressman Dick Armey explains, “There is nobody running the Tea Party Movement… [it is] the biggest swing movement on the field.”

Liberals like Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has called the Tea Party movement “astroturf”, while lauding the OWS movement for being “spontaneous” and “focused.”

Those participating in the “Occupy Wall Street” Movement began gathering in Manhattan’s Liberty Square to express discontent with the economic recession through continued occupation of public domain in dozens of cities across the United States.  Occupiers target ‘greedy’ Wall Street bankers and those who ‘hoard’ wealth; they model their behavior after the recent Egyptian and Grecian riots.  The movement is not only violent and disrespectful, but also associated with anti-Semitic, anti-American terrorists.  Perhaps most unfortunately, “Occupy” has been placed on a glamorous pedestal by the media and in academia.  Time magazine has named “the protestor” as “Person of the Year” for 2011, and the Smithsonian Institute is creating a museum devoted to the “Occupy” efforts.  Not surprisingly, Obama has also endorsed “Occupy Wall Street” openly.


Progressives have pulled the victim card yet again, and Americans must reject this attempt at pushing responsibility onto industry.  Furthermore, many protestors are clueless as to why they’re actually there.  Their lack of knowledge in history allows them to desire a re-institution of communism, obviously a failed system of governance (as illustrated by the fall of the USSR and others).

However, this cannot be seen as only benign unrest from within; that mindset, held by the vast majority of the movement, will contribute to the destruction of the American Western culture and free market system – leading the charge toward socialism. While most “Occupy” demonstrations involving chanting and waving signs seem futile, we must realize the danger behind the mindset of all these jobless, equally lazy, historically ignorant, and ungrateful protestors.

According to Slate magazine, the Tea Party Movement is “losing something by not getting out in the streets.” In my opinion, the Tea Party Movement is setting an example by not “getting out in the streets.”  The Tea Party Movement represents the traditional, hard-working American who wants to support and elect leaders who will advocate a free market.  The values of the Tea Party Movement are alive in conservatives across the nation; it just looks different from pointless and utterly obnoxious “Occupy Wall Street” Movement stakeouts.

The key distinctions between the Tea Party Movement and “Occupy Wall Street” prove a disagreement between conservatives and progressives on the true purpose of protest, and what type of situation constitutes a protest.  The Huffington Post refers to the Tea Party Movement as a “national embarrassment.”  Even ACORN founder Walter Rathke states, “Comparing the Tea Party movement to occupy Wall Street is apples and oranges.” The two can’t be compared because they each advocate two different systems with two different goals.

I’d say the sense of entitlement embraced by those who occupy Wall Street and want to institute socialism is much more embarrassing than Americans who want to operate under a laissez-faire system that promotes freedom and opportunity.

Sydney Phillips // Lee University // @sydphillips



  1. “we must realize the danger behind the mindset of all these jobless, equally lazy, historically ignorant, and ungrateful protestors”

    You must realize the danger behind the fact that the additional jobs simply are not there due to increasing industrialization. And it is the employers/businessmen who contract illegal immigrants for low wages.

    “The Tea Party Movement represents the traditional, hard-working American who wants to support and elect leaders who will advocate a free market”

    In reality “free market” means the goods are made in China, Korea etc., and then sold increasing the price 2x to 10x without adding visible value. This has been done at least since the 1980s.

    For instance I built Personal Computer myself from parts, few if any of them are made in USA. Well the operating system, Windows, is made by an American company.

    Communism has failed due to bureaucracy, it is unknown if real communism ever existed. There have been many protests/riots, paticulary Belgium, Greece, the UK, and the Occupy movement in the USA. There are too many protesters.

    I do not really endorse the Occupy movement. I do not participate at all. But, it seems to be property/wealth is not distributed equally. Some property is simply left empty, and this sets up people.

    It is also interesting I can get a SD card reader for about 20 dollar from a chain electronics store, while the same card reader can be obtained for 1/10 the price from a 2 Euro store. It is managers, marketeers, middlemen, who make a big profit without adding visible value. And it is western businessmen who initially went to China, to obtain these goods, to order their manufacture.

    Communism has failed, few people really want back the society for instance of Eastern Germany- while there is some Nostalgia to it, it is not neccessarily a good kind of Nostalgia. But, hasn’t Capitalism failed too, big jewish gangs occupying New York, and selling useless diamonds? What are they doing with the profits, and who is buying this stuff? The jews are belived to have ties to nearly everywhere, Hollywood, the federal Reserve, and the media as well. Are they really interested to run these business areas in an American way? If many business sectors in America are effectively run by jews, and people become upset, are these people anti American?

    Commodore for instance was an American company initially set up by a jewish businessman. It was Irvin Gould who funded him to go to Japan, and to learn about calculators. Later he was booted out, that is correct, but anyway, the biography of this company is interesting. They closed doors in 1994. An example for free market or freedom of capitalism? It more seems to be anarchy-type management, and totally lack of care for the end user/customer.

    I do not support Anarchists, they are likely only to replace existing anarchy with their own implementation of it, if they are ever going to succeed. What I do not like aobut them is they only criticize. They never offer a strategy how to improve the economy, how to create more jobs.

    But the protesters are right, big properties are left empty, and these which are in use, are not used effectively. Means a building or part of a building is maybe used 10 hours during a week, still heated and maintained the rest of the time. Or there are people sitting inside, in offices, and they don’t do anything. It can take months to years for them to solve problems or to make any descisions. That is what some people like about Anarchists- they are likely to find a solution almost instantly. But they don’t know if they are ever going to succeed, they would install bloated administration not unlikely the administration that could be seen in communist governments.

    I think it is useless to label population groups or political movements, and judge them by the label. It is important to examine what they are doing exactly, and if it is effective. Are they really loyal officers. or do they consider members of the general public who walk in as disturbing factor, and trouble source?

    By the way, I am interested for volunteers who want to write posts on my stoprisk blog. This can be any topic relating to stopping risk, or also topics that can attract more readers. However I do not allow bad words/bad language, such as “terrorism”. The suspects have been locked up and the topic should not become dramatized all over on the internet. Terrorists do not argue they do not protest, they build bombs and blow up innocent people without warning, and without correlation.

  2. Kelly Kafir says:

    And I never saw a TEA partier crap in the street… disgusting!

  3. Kelly Kafir says:

    Geez yc projects… you sound like an anti semite… and so we rest our case!

  4. What is happening today is in direct relation to the efforts of the American citizens’ direct involvement and maintainence of their government.

    The sadness and true reality of what we are witnessing and experiencing today is the direct, deliberate and combined willful neglect of the American citizens, whom for decades have sat back on their lazy and pompous asses believing that they do not have to MAINTAIN THEIR GOVERNMENT on a DAILY BASIS starting with their city councils, county government, the support of their county sheriffs, their State Representatives, and on up to their Congressmen and Senators.

    All too often people always believed that it is more important to plot their asses down in front of the TV set or hang out at their favorite sports bar and swill beer and root for THEIR TEAM, puff their pot, chase skirts and hang out at the tracks and casinos! All the while the REAL TEAM, their ELECTED GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS are off doing whatever they want to do or in many cases MUST do because they lack the active input of their constituents.

    I have performed MANY field tests in many cities across the country, at times holding up a $50 dollar bill and asking the people on the street who their city councilman was, or their congressman, when was the last county council meeting held and what was on the agenda and day after day I returned home with that same $50 bill.

    The true and always sad reality is as I have stated, and that will always be; “What is happening today is in direct relation to the efforts of the American citizens’ direct involvement and maintainence of their government.”

  5. A. Friend says:

    The Occupy group is nothing more than parasitic trash.

  6. Price Rudolph says:

    I liked the article overall but a few portions I found unnecessary. Saying that the protest is disrespectful is obvious and really doesn’t say anything because all protest are disrespectful. The Tea Party (which I support) is very disrespectful to our President and Congress. Also, saying they are associated with “anti-Semitic, anti-American terrorists” is similar to when a liberal friend of mine said that the Tea Party is associated with “racism and militant right wing, anti-government extremist”.


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