I had the pleasure of meeting Mary Schorsch at the April 15 Tea Party on Augusta Common. She was polite, but evasive when I inquired about the piece of paper she handed me -- which was a card inviting the bearer to provide private information and request a discontinuation of federal benefits.
I read it -- and I blew it off. Had she taken the time to discuss it with me or anyone else, she may have found that she has more in common with the Tea Party movement than she realizes.
However, I do question her choice of friends. Her "friend" approached me and proceeded to ask me about my sign. My sign read, "Christian First, American Second, Conservative Third." She asked me why I had "Christian" first. I told her that I am a follower of Jesus and that I try to live my life under his guidance first. She then asked me what I would think about God if God was a black woman with one eye and a lesbian. I told her that if it made her feel better to believe that, then that was her privilege.
I have no idea why she would feel inclined to ask me such an offensive question, other than to try to engage me into some sort of confrontation. Fortunately, neither God nor my beliefs need defending, and I blew her off also.
As far as the Tea Party being a "private party," if her only reason for attending these events is to offend people or to stir up confrontation and anger, then she is not welcome, and in that respect they are "private." It was her intentions that brought down the wrath of some of the attendees.
We were peaceful and would have been willing to listen to her point of view if she had expressed it in a calm, intelligent manner. Ms. Schorsch and her friend chose to be subversive and antagonistic -- therefore, they received the attention they desired.