Americans are waiting today to see what happens with Health Care Reform. I am trying to follow on the Internet so am grateful when I get an eyewitness report like this one from Brody Levesque. Here's what he has to say:
"I am sitting at home now, quietly reflecting on the scenes I saw unfold today on Capitol Hill as thousands of so-called Tea Party types gathered around the U. S. Capitol and the House & Senate Office buildings. What I witnessed was nothing less short of breathtaking as the scope of the true nature & character of these people was put on display for all to see and hear.
There was absolutely no sense of civility, or even pretense of basic manners and dignity. No, what I witnessed was bigotry, discriminatory ideology, and hateful speech being advocated by so-called patriotic Americans against other Americans that, from my understanding of the protesters line of thought, are apparently less 'American' than they are. To say that the behaviours I witnessed was bizarre and disgusting is a gross understatement, it was an affront to human dignity.
Two well respected members of Congress, Civil rights veteran and follower of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) and fellow Congressional colleague Andre Carson (D-IN) were exiting from the Canon House Office building after the Democratic Caucus meeting with the President, when several members of the crowd gathered at the entrances, Tea party protesters, began yelling "Kill the Bill," and then hurling the ugly racist epithet, 'Nigger' at the two representatives who happen to both be African-American. I later asked the obviously shaken and upset Congressman Lewis about what had happened and he simply said,
"People have been just downright ugly and mean-spirited about this."
Mean spirited? Well, it went further, according to TPM correspondent Brian Beutler, he reports that earlier in the afternoon today:
"...standing outside a Democratic whip meeting in the Longworth House office building, I watched Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) make his way out the door, en route to the neighboring Rayburn building. As he rounded the corner toward the exit, wading through a huge crowd of tea partiers and other health care protesters, an elderly white man screamed "Barney, you faggot"--a line that caused dozens of his confederates to erupt in laughter.
After that incident, Capitol police threatened to expel the protesters from the building, but were outnumbered and quickly overwhelmed. Tea party protesters equipped with high-end video cameras were summoned to film the encounter and the officers ultimately relented."