On September 12, 2009, thousands of Americans came to Washington, DC to tell our politicians that we objected to their reckless spending, their mortgaging of our children's future, and their attempt to grow the power of the federal government at the expense of individual liberty. I was there that Saturday along with my wife and son, and I have to tell you, it was one of the most inspirational experiences of my life. My greatest fear while driving into DC that morning was that there would not be much of a crowd. I felt morally compelled to join this demonstration, but would anyone else share my sense of obligation? I was afraid that Americans would be too apathetic to stand up and protest the blatant grab for power that was taking place in Washington. My fears were unjustified. As we reached the New Carrollton Metro Station, we were greeted with a full parking lot and had to drive on to the overflow area. There were lines ten to twenty deep at the ticket machines. I generally shun large crowds, but I have never been so happy to be lost in a sea of humanity in my life. I was not alone. Overwhelming numbers of my fellow Americans shared my concerns and were prepared to do something about it. Marching down Pennsylvania Avenue and standing in front of the Capital with thousands of like minded souls gave me hope that we might yet stop this juggernaut of big government out of control.
There was no one single cause driving this throng of people. Everyone had their own specific motivating issues. It may have been taxes, spending, immigration, gun control, health care, home schooling, abortion, vaccination, energy policy, cap and trade/tax, the fairness doctrine, prayer in schools, or card check. There were lots of people who were generally just fed up with a perceived lack of integrity in Washington, and yes, there were even a few who had questions about the president's birth certificate. There were people who were mainstream and some who were closer to the fringe. I doubt that in that crowd of thousands there could have been more than a handful of people who shared my views on all of these issues. But that was irrelevant. We didn't have to agree on everything. We were a coalition of individuals, each with their own significant issues; the issues that were important enough to them to bring them out there that Saturday morning. Not just the issues about which they might have had an opinion, but the issues that were important enough to determine how they vote. And even if no two of us could agree on all the issues before us, we were united under one common belief; that government has grown too big, too intrusive, and has forsaken the principles upon which this country was founded.
Today I learned that Tea Party: The Documentary Film will be released directly to DVD on Thanksgiving Day (watch movie trailer) to tell the story of the Tea Party Movement and the 912 Project. I can only hope that the film will help encourage and inspire yet more Americans to rise to the challenge to take back our country from elements who want to abandon the principles of free markets, limited government and fiscal restraint. There may be thousands or even millions of people out there who feel the way that I did; people who hate what is happening to this country but feel helpless to stop it. Maybe this film will restore the hope for them that the 912 March on Washington restored for me, and encourage them to take action to keep this a country that promises equal opportunity, not equal outcomes, and values individual responsibility above group entitlement.