Last month the Boston Globe published a reader letter that managed to span two of my professional interests, so I’m quoting it on both blogs today:
Members of the Tea Party movement claim that their name was adopted from the Boston Tea Party, an act of civil disobedience against the tyrannical government of the time (“Understanding the Tea Party,’’ Letters, Oct. 12).Whatever your views, if you’re an American citizen I hope you’ve voted by the end of the day. Otherwise, those of us who do vote don’t have to listen to you.
I contend that the name must derive from another historic tea party, namely, the one from Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland.’’ In that classic tale and its follow-up, “Through the Looking-Glass,’’ there exists a vast cast of characters, many reminiscent of today’s Tea Partiers who talk jabberwocky on a regular basis.
There are the twins Tweedledum and Tweedledee who bicker over insignificant issues; the Red Queen who constantly orders the beheading of anyone who displeases her; and the imbecilic White Queen. And let’s not forget the Mad Hatter.
To those offended by the current use of the term Tea Party, I suggest they shift their point of reference. They’ll find that the current movement is more than aptly named.