This Weekend’s Events From An Eyewitness Viewpoint
My daughter-in-law, Laura Stevenson Paquette, was present on the hill all weekend. We are so very proud of her for participating, as we are proud of all of our fellow citizens that felt compelled to make yet one more trip to DC to demonstrate our contempt for the process and the content of this government takeover of heathcare. She was interviewed by her local television station- film here. She had a front row position for the supposed “name calling incident” and states her observations below:
The Code Red Rally From My Perspective
by Laura Stevenson Paquette
Every time I attend a tea party protest, I can’t help but feel a glimmer of hope that maybe this will be the time the media accurately reports what is going on. I attended the 9/12 protest in Washington, D.C., a state sovereignty rally in my home state of Virginia, and most recently, the Saturday and Sunday Code Red rallies against the health care bill. Sadly, the mainstream media has yet to get anything right.
I am not an uneducated redneck (I have a bachelors degree and a masters degree), I am not a racist, I am not uninformed or stupid. The other protesters don’t fit these descriptions either. We are citizens who are horrified to watch the destruction of the United State of America and the Constitution. The following is my account of what really happened on Saturday, March 20 and Sunday, March 21.
Once I heard that protesters would be back in D.C. on Saturday to denounce the health care bill, I felt compelled to go. As a young wife and middle school teacher, I didn’t think I could live with myself if I didn’t do everything I could for the future of my students and for the children that my husband and I hope to have. Early Saturday morning, I left my home near Virginia Beach, picked up my friend Jill in Williamsburg, and made the three hour drive to D.C. We weren’t sure if many people would be there or not; after-all, the Saturday rally was put together at the last minute, and many people had a lot further to drive than we did.
As we emerged from the Capital South metro station and started walking toward the west lawn of the Capital building, our hearts began to swell. Everywhere we looked, protesters were walking toward the Capital. They carried American Flags, yellow “Don’t Tread on Me” flags, wore pro tea party and pro Constitution t-shirts, and carried homemade signs. I did not see any Confederate flags. We arrived on the lawn at approximately 12:30pm, and it was packed with tens of thousands of people. We listened to some of the tea party organizers and supporters speak, and then we were informed that President Obama would be arriving on the east side of the Capital at 3:00pm. Hundreds of us moved to stand on either side of the street that leads to the east side. We also stood on either side of the sidewalk and steps that leads from the Capital to the Cannon House Office Building. Jill and I positioned ourselves on the sidewalk, right next to the stairs leading into the building. On the stairs, a group of gentlemen held up an American flag.
As members of Congress walked from the Capital to the Cannon HOB, we chanted slogans such as “Kill the bill,” or “Vote no!” As members of the Congressional Black Caucus walked past us, we all booed. After they entered the Cannon HOB, one of them came back out with a police officer, saying someone had called him the “n-word”. Contrary to what has been reported in the mainstream news media, at no point did I hear any racial slurs or see anyone spitting. If these events had really happened, why weren’t they captured by the cameras that were present? I am deeply disturbed that false allegations are being made against us. Clearly the left is trying to discredit us by making us look like racists and bigots.
I would also like to provide an account of the supposed counter-protesters. People in support of the health care bill began arriving on Sunday between 12:00 and 1:00pm. They were bused in by the SEIU, carried matching blue signs provided to them, and angrily tried to march through our tea party protest. Whenever one of them came marching in, we blew our whistles to drown out their cries of, “Health care now!” and we held our homemade signs and flags up in front of their pre-manufactured ones. We were not rude to them.
Throughout the two days I spent at the Capital, I was nothing but impressed by my fellow tea party members and protesters. All races and ages were represented. Many, many families were there. The signs people carried were about a love for democracy and the Constitution, and a hatred of socialism and big government. I did not see or hear anything racist. We left no trash on the ground. We thanked the police, who were very cordial and polite, for keeping us safe and helping to direct us around the city. Our cries were not cries of hatred, but cries for freedom and liberty! We prayed; we sang patriotic songs. We said The Lord’s Prayer and The Pledge of Allegiance. We were, and are, ordinary people who have answered the call to save Our Country.