I agree that it seems ridiculous, and an insult to the memory of the Boston Tea Party, to have to apply for a permit to have a "tea party". I feel that is part of the bureaucracy that we are currently railing against!The men who had the original tea party risked imprisonment, if not their very lives.
Today's tea parties seem to be more like feel-good protests.
By definition, one cannot obtain a permit for a tea party! To do so dishonors Sam Adams and the brave men who dumped that tea into Boston Harbor.
Any local event using the name "tea party" must, in my opinion, carry with it some genuine risk for the participants. Otherwise, what's the point?
I'm in agreement with William, which is why I asked what type of tea party to have. The nicest of tea parties is to set up a table outside the Post Office and serve tea to all of the people going in to mail their taxes to the government. Most of them OWE taxes, that's why they mail them on April 15th. Serving tea is a way of saying "we're sorry you're being screwed by the government too."
A real tea party is dumping tea where you should not be dumping anything. That's the civil disobedience part. It's extreme but it draws attention and it draws out the media if they know some law breaking is going to occur. Are you willing to dump tea on the Post Office sidewalk? That's harsh because those taxpayers are all of us. Are you willing to dump tea on the Courthouse steps? It'll draw attention but what is the message at that particular location? The big question is: are you willing to be fined and/or arrested for your beliefs?
If you saw Obama on Jay Leno then you know he's not taking the tea party protests seriously. However, our local and state politicians WILL pay attention. Our Commissioners must pay attention to a group that draws attention and the media. They must be willing to hear us and they must be willing to account for their actions.
Our state politicians must listen to their constituents. Kerry, GT, Scott, etc. are all willing souls who do listen. Chances are likely they'll vote against anything that goes against the Constitution (i.e. 90% taxation of AIG bonuses).
The hardest to get to are the State Senators and United States Senators. Jake Corman (R) and John Wozniak (D) hold State Senate seats for Centre County. And of course Arlen Spector (R-she typed doubtfully) and Bob Casey, Jr (D). are the United States Senators for PA.
So how do we get to those levels?