an independent Tea Party group in DuPage County, IL
Having worked in printing, publishing and graphic design for 35+ years, I'm a big fan of Apple Computer. Way back in 1984, I was one of those morons who spent $2500 to buy a little Apple Macintosh computer when they first hit the market. My friends and family told me I was nuts. As a graphic artist, the minute I saw the Mac and what I could potentially do with it, I fell in love. MacPaint and MacDraw, about the only Macintosh software available at the time, had visions of new creative possibilities dancing in my head. I joined one of the first Macintosh User Groups in the county, in downtown Chicago. The group was named "The Rest of Us", embracing the idea that we "creative folk" simply "think different". I believe there were 20 of us at the first meeting. Yes, I was a nerd and a geek for Apple. For several years, I made pretty good money teaching other designers how to use this wonderful new tool for creativity.
Fast forward to today, and there's no denying the enormous impact that Apple Computer has had on the world. How could we live today without our iPhones and iPads?! The influence that company has had on society is immeasurable. I have to wonder: if I; along with a handful of other "nuts" in 1984; hadn't stepped out boldly in faith to invest that precious $2500, what would society have missed? And man, am I glad I bought some Apple stock in those early days— it paid for my daughter's wedding years later!
In 1997, Apple produced a commercial that captured what "The Crazy Ones" have meant to the world. As a leader in the Tea Party Movement (a bunch of "crazy ones"), every once in awhile when I'm feeling a bit down and overwhelmed, I watch it again. Take one minute to watch it here:
Many have seen news of the recent Gallup poll (http://www.gallup.com/poll/186338/support-tea-party-drops-new-low.a...), showing that support for the TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party is at it's lowest point since Gallup began polling on the TEA Party. There is good news behind the headlines. While overt "support" of the movement is shrinking, 54% of those polled (the highest number ever) neither "support" nor oppose the movement. In other words, we have become an accepted and not unwelcome part of the American political landscape. Opposition to us has not increased, in spite of the Left and the MSM doing everything possible to ostracize, demonize, marginalize and obliterate this movement. In six years, (and without becoming an "official political party"), we have become a greater force in American politics that the Libertarians, Constitution Party, American Communist Party, Socialist Party, etc.— and those parties have been trying to break down the political barriers for many more years than we have.
During the past six years, many of us have been abused (I've been spit on, physically assaulted, and harassed), persecuted by the IRS, mocked and made fun of, betrayed by those we helped elect, almost gone broke, lost friends and some have even lost family relationships. Is it any wonder that many stalwart TEA party advocates have limped back to the safety of hearth and home to lick their wounds or completely throw in the towel?!
As Philip Bump points out in his recent Washington Post article (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2015/10/26/tea-party...), in just six short years, we have pushed both the House and the Senate in a more conservative direction. This has occurred even though we only get chances to change things up every two years for the House and every six years for the Senate! And even though many we sent to D.C. have betrayed us, those of us in the grassroots now have some real champions for our cause in Washington.
Yes, many have fallen by the wayside and we have lost precious friends in the battles. Those of us who have hung in there know first-hand how George Washington and his troops must have felt: cold, wet, hungry, abandoned and betrayed. Like many of the Founders, some of us have given our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor to try to keep this nation from descending into tyranny. I salute you, my compatriots, and I am honored to be fighting alongside you. We have lived to fight another day. And to the entrenched establishment on both sides of the aisle, it's time to "think different". Either jump on the reform bandwagon or eat our dust. Here's to the crazy ones.