The term “Libertarian” made its debut onto the political scene through an unfortunate way. It was during the early Obama years that the infamous Tea Party made its appearance with peaceful, yet angry protests against the Obama administration. The Tea Party, hoping to create ties to the revolutionary Boston Tea party event has done anything but. They are conservative, pro-government, and religiously bias – a horrible way to commemorate the secular founding fathers. And yet, the Tea Party persisted libertarian roots and not only tarnished our founding father’s ideals, but also the very name “Libertarian” is linked to the evangelical conservative movement.
In a recent study by the PRRI, a conservative Christian political group, only a mere 10% claim to be Libertarians within the Tea Party – where 52% identify as the Christian Right with the remainder belonging to the “conservative” group. But the differences between the Tea Party and Libertarian base lies a huge and impassable hole of ideological differences. For example, issues like abortion, physician assisted suicide, legalization of marijuana, and gay marriage presents issues between Tea Partiers and Libertarians – one that can not be reconciled. The biggest difference, to me, is the religious ideals between the Tea Party and the Libertarians. Libertarians, famous for the rights of man, prefer no religious bias be tied into government, where the Tea Partiers overwhelmingly promote religion in the government, schools and in daily life – a huge error to the founding fathers and libertarians alike. So how can libertarians and Tea Partiers differ on such huge issues and still be lumped in together?
The protests, featuring aging seniors sanding around with signs, seems to have made a possibly conscious connection to Libertarians. While, yes, the Tea Party is anti-government, they are anti-one kind of government: Obama’s government and while Libertarians can agree on hedging back government power – it is for completely different reasons. The Tea Party goal is to attack the Obama’s administration for the sake of reactionary conservatism – where as the Libertarians seem to keep their focus purely on the rights of man. The Tea Party is nothing but what is now considered the alt-right: Ultra Conservative, evangelical, reactionaries.