A Tea Party Thanksgiving

Deal W. Hudson
Published November 24, 2010

Ask me what I am thankful for this year, and one of the first things that comes to mind is the social/political phenomenon of the Tea Party.

To me, it represents a loud “enough is enough” – not only to the nonsense being perpetrated by the White House and the Congress, but also to the bad ideas that have infused our public policy for decades.

If we are lucky, the Tea Party will be around long enough to accomplish a fundamental reorientation of public attitudes toward government, education, and the media.

The biggest loser in the mid-term elections, where the Tea Party demonstrated its clout, was the mainstream media. With the exception of Fox News, all the major news networks and many newspapers failed to take the Tea Party seriously and cooperated in the failed effort to taint it with racism.

Liberals long ago found the best way to fight conservatives was to avoid ideas and instead ascribe them a despicable motive, preferably racism (the charge of misogyny having lost its steam).

When confronting a Catholic liberal, the motive one is often ascribed is not racism but Republicanism – as if this were the only explanation for why you wouldn’t want Catholic dollars going to community organizations that promote abortion and same-sex marriage.

The subject-motive shift – as we used to call this fallacy in logic class – has become so entrenched in the public mind that very few noticed it, until those in the Tea Party refused to take the bait. They weren’t going to have their objections to government bailouts and Obamacare reduced to their supposed objection to an African-American president.

In fact, the Tea Party represents a post-racial society better than President Obama in the White House. The president and his surrogates have not been very subtle in playing the race card, while the Tea Party refused to cower and cringe when charged with bigotry. They know full well that the racism of their parents is no longer part of the fabric of American society.

This fusion of racial and political attitudes was first accomplished in the academy through the vehicle of “multiculturalism.” It purported to put all cultures and beliefs on equal footing, but in practice it denigrated traditional Western education for its association with male domination (patriarchy), conquest (colonialism), and slavery.

Our nation itself – founded by men and women inspired by Western ideals of freedom and liberty – was placed under the shadow of the multicultural critique. As a result, the patriotic impulse was held suspect until it was revived again – not only by the Tea Party but also by pride in our military efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Government policies have inevitably been shaped by a mixture of politics, race and gender. The 2005 immigration debate was doomed from the beginning, based as it was in the perverse logic of multiculturalism that grants privileges to those who are classified as “excluded” by taking them away from others.

The legislation currently before Congress called the Dream Act is a perfect example. This bill allows children of undocumented immigrants to go to U.S. universities and pay in-state tuition. Some 55,000 youngsters who come each year to the United States illegally as children or who were born here to undocumented immigrant parents would be allowed to go to university after completing high school.

At present, children of illegal immigrants can’t enroll in college even if they attended elementary, middle, and high school in the United States. These potential university students would now compete for enrollment with students who are American citizens.

This aspect of the Dream Act is grossly unjust and makes a complete mockery of any idea of citizenship. The Dream Act grants economic privileges to persons because they are illegal – privileges denied to a legal citizen.

If anyone wonders why there is such a thing as a Tea Party, all they have to do is look at legislation like this. Whether or not the bill is passed, the debate alone will extend the life and influence of the Tea Party – for which I am thankful.

By Deal Hudson

Deal W. Hudson was born November 20, 1949 in Denver, CO, to Emmie and Jack Hudson, both native Texans. Dr. Hudson had an older sister Ruth, and eventually, a younger sister, Elizabeth. Emmie Hudson, Ruth Hudson and Elizabeth Hudson now live in Houston, TX; Jack Hudson passed away some years ago. The late Jack Hudson was a captain for Braniff Airlines in Denver at the time of Dr. Hudson’s birth. Later the family moved to Kansas City when his father joined the Federal Aviation Agency. From Kansas City, the Hudson family moved to Minneapolis, then to Massapequa, NY, and finally to Alexandria, VA, where they first occupied a home overlooking the Potomac River adjacent to the Mount Vernon estate. After a year, the family moved to a home on Tarpon Lane a few houses up the street from the Yacht Haven boat docks. Dr. Hudson attended Mt. Vernon Elementary School from grades 4 to 6 and has a special gratitude for the teaching of Mr. Hoppe who first told him was a ‘smart lad.’ Having moved with his family to Fort Worth, TX in 1960, Dr. Hudson attended William Monnig Junior High and Arlington Heights HS. In high school, Dr. Hudson was captain of the golf team, editor of the literary magazine (Guerdon), and performed the role of Peter in the ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ during his senior year. Dr. Hudson graduated cum laude with a major in philosophy from the University of Texas-Austin in 1971 where his undergraduate advisor was Prof. John Silber. His teachers at the University of Texas included Prof. Louis Mackey and Prof. Larry Caroline. Dr. Hudson minored in both classics and English literature. Dr. Hudson lived in Atlanta from 1974-1989, where he attended Emory University, receiving a Phd from the Graduate Institute for the LIberal Arts. He also taught philosophy at Mercer University in Atlanta from 1980-89. In 1989 Dr. Hudson and his family left Atlanta when he was hired to teach philosophy at Fordham University in the Bronx. Dr. Hudson taught at Fordham, and also part-time at New York University, from 1989 to 1994. Dr. Hudson first came to Atlanta in after graduation from Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) with an M.Div. While at PTS, Dr. Hudson managed the Baptist Student Union at Princeton University and became its first director. Dr. Hudson also was licensed at a minister in the Southern Baptist Convention at Madison Baptist Church in Madison, NJ. Dr. Hudson’s primary area of study at PTS was the history of Christian doctrine which he pursued with Dr. Karlfried Froelich. In 1984 Dr. Hudson was received in the Catholic Church by Msgr. Richard Lopez, with the special permission of Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan, at the chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cancer Home in Atlanta. Dr. Hudson has been married twenty-five years to Theresa Carver Hudson and they have two children, Hannah Clare, 23, and Cyprian Joseph (Chip), 15, adopted from Romania when he was three years old. The Hudson family has lived in Fairfax, VA for more than fifteen years, after having lived five years in Bronxville, NY and a year in Atlanta, GA, where Theresa and Deal were married.

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