July 15th, 2010
11:13 AM ET

Tea Partiers 'racist'? iReporters sound off

iReporters Jason Asselin, left, and Omekongo Dibinga sound off on the NAACP's recent resolution regarding Tea Partiers.

CNN.com readers and iReporters have had a passionate response to the NAACP’s resolution condemning Tea Partiers for having “racist elements.”

“We take issue with the Tea Party’s continued tolerance for bigotry and bigoted statements. The time has come for them to accept the responsibility that comes with influence and make clear there is no space for racism and anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry in their movement,” NAACP President and CEO Ben Jealous said.

iReporter Omekongo Dibinga posted a video, telling CNN, “If the Tea Party wants to become a credible organization, it has to show leadership when racist acts are committed by its members."

Watch: NAACP, Tea Party at war?

He went on to mention things he believes the Tea Party could do to combat racism: “The Tea Party can also partake in events that promote respect for other groups in a non-reactionary capacity, such as MLK Day events. The Party can also call out individuals by name who commit racist acts.”

Jason Asselin, who has attended some Tea Party events, disagreed, saying in his own iReport video that the resolution was not fair.

“All organizations have people among them that are there for the wrong reasons, even the Tea Party has these type of people. If people were to pay attention, they might see these people being asked to leave,” he said. “Everyone has a right to free speech but even that should have its limits.”

Commenter “SJS52987” wrote, “If the Tea Party isn't racist, how is that every time I ask one of them a legitimate policy question, they can't answer it without mentioning President Obama's race?”

“Bigolug” wrote, “I'm sure there are a few racists involved with the Tea Party, just like there are racists involved with the NAACP. To label the whole Tea Party movement as racist is just a stretch and most likely politically motivated.”

If you would like to join the conversation, share your comments below or post an iReport on video.

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Filed under: Race
soundoff (1,137 Responses)
  1. SweatPotatoPie

    One of the things that ethnic studies brings to our country is more explanation on the history of American and its eras. Not just big ticket items like the Industrial Revolution and generic terms like Post Civil War, but eras like Reconstruction and Enlightenment. Enlightenment was a period when the founders of this nation developed a higher sense of being (mainly from across the ocean in Europe). Do you know the criticism our fathers got from spending so much time learning from the country we fled? How is that for irony. Once Enlightened our fathers felt it beneath them to own slaves and passed the job to lowly poor whites. This was in part done to wash their hands of a crime and keep the poor whites busy with the slaves so they could interfere in the creation and sustainability of a new country. During this time, in the hands of the poor whites who lorded over the plantations, the most heinous of crimes were committed against slaves – the stuff you read about and see when talking about slavery. But this group of poor whites given power had a name: THE MIDDLE CLASS. An ever sense then the mentality of hatred and the idea you are somehow better than blacks/minorities has persisted until today. Racism isn't dead, it's just not as socially acceptable to public display. But what you don't get, what I can't understand is how you can't see this. Racism is not real, it never was. It never existed until Enlightened men on the cusp of creating a new nation developed it to keep slaves and poor whites in check. So when you spew this nonsense and hate filled slander about a man in power because of the color of his skin you are practicing the very nature of racism, but at the same time doing exactly what men of real power want you to do. So WAKE UP and be your own person. What groups like the NCAACP are meant to do is attack this blind hatred and rid it from our country. They are doing everyone a service by forcing the race conversation to take place and slowly exposing the dirty little lie that our forefathers created to keep us from ever overthrowing their power.

    July 15, 2010 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  2. SweatPotatoPie

    Let me say this another way. The problem with the Tea Party movement is they have allowed personal agenda and political persuasion to infiltrate them. What is more of the issue here? The fact that angry white americans are talking dirty about black americans? Or that two groups of people are spending their time arguing race rather than focusing their attentions on keeping the government in check. Let's have a conversation about that.

    July 15, 2010 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  3. JBfromFL

    Thank you for posting this!

    Catherine Jefferson

    The Tea Party isn't an organization – it's a whole bunch of individuals and ad-hock little organizations that share a common view that the current administration and "powers that be" are serving the United States poorly. There are so many different people with very different opinions on many issues who identify as part of the "tea party" movement that it's inevitable that some are racist. At the same time, this "racist" organization is actively supporting candidates from minority racial and ethnic backgrounds in many places in the United States, including black candidates in the south. The reason? They are convinced that those candidates agree with them on at least some important issues. Most of those issues seem to have to do with the government spending a bunch of money that it doesn't have, racking up record deficits, and putting huge ongoing financial burdens on the citizens of this country as a result.

    I'm not a tea partier myself. I prefer to have a stronger social welfare net than most Tea Party supporters are willing to pay for, and have some strong opinions about civil liberties that extend even to illegal immigrants and terrorist suspects But the Tea Party that I've been watching isn't fundamentally a racist phenomenon, and isn't particularly racist in those shared views and goals that I've been able to identify. So far, my opinion of the liberal and leftist opposition to it is that they don't know what they are facing and are screaming out their own ignorance and (dare I say it) bigotry for all to see. Nice work, guys. :/

    July 15, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse | Reply

    July 15, 2010 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Scott

    Those who undeniably control the government, have a monopoly on the media, and print the money (JEWS) will do everything they can to see to it that the "Tea Party" crowd is steered as far away from looking in their direction as possible. Hiding behind every other "minority" and portraying anyone who dares to name them and point out their undeniable control and culpability as being "racist". Just telling the plain and simple truth makes any White man a "racist". Merely wanting to look out for his own interests/survival is politically incorrect in a system that clearly seeks to destroy him.

    The Jews know that all roads of truth invariably lead to them, so they have to put up road blocks at every turn to prevent people from realizing that truth. The TRUTH itself is "antisemitic" and no matter how calm and peaceful the messenger might be, he will still be the focus of the attack.

    So now, the Tea Party crowd has been put on the defensive(by design, as this very article is also meant to do). MOST of them spend their time proclaiming that they are "not racists" and nothing of any real significance is ever discussed at these Tea Parties.

    Tea Party member's general message: "we're not racists and to prove it we will quickly silence anyone who dare speak the truth in an attempt to let us know what is really going on and more importantly WHO is really behind it".

    THEY (God's "Chosen People") are playing you ALL for fools and 99% of you are taking the bait, hook, line, and sinker.

    Want to attack the messenger, go ahead. Want the one and only truth? Visit TheForbiddenTruth net Where the truth is FREE and uncensored. The choice is yours.......

    July 15, 2010 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Scott

    Those who undeniably control the government, have a monopoly on the media, and print the money (JEWS) will do everything they can to see to it that the "Tea Party" crowd is steered as far away from looking in their direction as possible. Hiding behind every other "minority" and portraying anyone who dares to name them and point out their undeniable control and culpability as being "racist". Just telling the plain and simple truth makes any White man a "racist". Merely wanting to look out for his own interests/survival is politically incorrect in a system that clearly seeks to destroy him.

    The Jews know that all roads of truth invariably lead to them, so they have to put up road blocks at every turn to prevent people from realizing that truth. The TRUTH itself is "antisemitic" and no matter how calm and peaceful the messenger might be, he will still be the focus of the attack.

    So now, the Tea Party crowd has been put on the defensive(by design, as this very article is also meant to do). MOST of them spend their time proclaiming that they are "not racists" and nothing of any real significance is ever discussed at these Tea Parties.

    Tea Party member's general message: "we're not racists and to prove it we will quickly silence anyone who dare speak the truth in an attempt to let us know what is really going on and more importantly WHO is really behind it".

    THEY (God's "Chosen People") are playing you ALL for fools and 99% of you are taking the bait, hook, line, and sinker.

    Want to attack the messenger, go ahead. Want the one and only truth? Visit TheForbiddenTruth net Where the truth is FREE and uncensored. The choice... is yours.

    July 15, 2010 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Scott

    Those who undeniably control the government, have a monopoly on the media, and print the money (JEWS) will do everything they can to see to it that the "Tea Party" crowd is steered as far away from looking in their direction as possible. Hiding behind every other "minority" and portraying anyone who dares to name them and point out their undeniable control and culpability as being "racist". Just telling the plain and simple truth makes any White man a "racist". Merely wanting to look out for his own interests/survival is politically incorrect in a system that clearly seeks to destroy him.

    The Jews know that all roads of truth invariably lead to them, so they have to put up road blocks at every turn to prevent people from realizing that truth. The TRUTH itself is "antisemitic" and no matter how calm and peaceful the messenger might be, he will still be the focus of the attack.

    So now, the Tea Party crowd has been put on the defensive(by design, as this very article is also meant to do). MOST of them spend their time proclaiming that they are "not racists" and nothing of any real significance is ever discussed at these Tea Parties.

    Tea Party member's general message: "we're not racists and to prove it we will quickly silence anyone who dare speak the truth in an attempt to let us know what is really going on and more importantly WHO is really behind it".

    THEY (God's "Chosen People") are playing you ALL for fools and 99% of you are taking the bait, hook, line, and sinker.

    Want to attack the messenger, go ahead. Want the one and only truth? Visit TheForbiddenTruth net Where the truth is FREE and uncensored. The choice... is... yours.

    July 16, 2010 at 12:05 am | Report abuse |
  7. Karl Nielson

    I was raised in an evangelical Christian home, both parents are staunchly pro-Life, uber-Evangelical, and hyper-Republican. I went to college, educated myself, and realized how narrow their view of the political theater in America truly is. When Bush was president, they repeatedly told me during political arguments that I should not insult or criticize him because he "our" President, and because he was a "real" Christian, and because he respected human life. Now that Obama is in office, I wish that same rule applied to them now. They will maintain that he is not their President because he is a liberal, two faced, baby-hating individual, and that it is completely fine to criticize him and insult him because he is not a "real" Christian. The tangible hatred they hold for Obama and his administration which stands in blatant and direct violation of their Christian faith, I see as being a reflection of the undercurrent of this Tea Party movement. My parents are not by any means racist; I am confident that their hatred of Obama has absolutly nothing to do with his race. I am, however, fearful of the cloistered country bumpkin Tea Partiers living in the middle of America who hold the same hatred that my parents do, with a dash of racism mixed in with their political beliefs. I live and work overseas, and looking at America across the Pacific, I am saddened by this ignorant, fear and propaganda driven, ill-informed mob of hicks spouting racially charged political nonsense. Get an education and foster an open world-view, and THEN talk politics for God and humanity`s sake.

    July 16, 2010 at 1:54 am | Report abuse |
  8. Sonya

    I think that race relations could finally move forward in this country if outdated racist organizations like the NAACP were condemned. Many people of my generation are of mixed race and certainly do not associate with any organization that first off calls itself "colored" people and secondly puts forth the idea that one group of people should be advanced based on their skin color. No educated person would support this organization. It is an insult to me and my children!!!

    July 16, 2010 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  9. Jason

    someone has poor gasoline on the dynamite stick, then struck a match.

    question: why are jewish people allowed to decry anti-semitism (and rightly so), but some whites turn on blacks like a pack of wolves when they dare decry racism???? is it lack of clout? or is it because there are more racist than anti-semites? is the denials themselves racist? does pigment have a magical power to magnetise hate/opposition? is it collective guilt? is it combinations of the above?...WHY THE DIFFERENCE?.

    July 16, 2010 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
  10. forreal

    this is all a distraction. first off anyone that says that there are no racists in the tea party has had one too many "special tea". Are there no racists in NAACP? Anyone that says that should also join the other bags. Hate is destructive not good for your health. That said to try to scream racism from a group that has been the recipient of it for decades is passive-agressive. What have blacks done historically to whites, systematically that is. NADA. Unless you are all afraid they will do it now. do not fear. your fear is just affirmation of what

    July 16, 2010 at 11:11 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Dave

    When will the NAACP come out and denounce the Black Panthers for racism? Double standard.

    July 19, 2010 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  12. Eric Patterson

    stimulus packages are very helpful for kickstarting the economy;**

    October 6, 2010 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  13. Lily Evans

    you can avail of home loans from several companies that offer low interest rates .,"

    December 2, 2010 at 7:25 am | Report abuse |
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