The Campus Tea Party Movement

By Annie Augustine

It seems the Tea Party is gaining traction with college students, as student-run, grassroots Tea Party groups are springing up on campuses across the country.  While started independently of each other, a collection of these groups are banding together on TeaPartyStudents.org, reports the Student Free Press Association's Kate Havard (via The Corner's John J. Miller).  The students who founded these groups say their views were unrepresented on campus and are eager to bring the message of the Tea Party movement to a younger audience. 

Here is what a few students have to say:

"We wanted to prove stereotypes wrong, the liberal pundits who say that [the Tea Party] has no appeal to youth," said Daniel Oliver, the site's founder. ...

"I thought there was a real need for students to understand the cause of the economic hardship, and I didn't trust the professors to give them an unbiased account of capitalism," said Dan Chinburg, founder of the UPenn chapter of the Philadelphia Tea Party Patriots. A former full-time intern for a Pennslyvania county Democratic Committee, he said he's "always believed in freedom and liberty," but when he began to preserve those things in the economic sphere, he changed his mind about the role of government in its citizens' lives.

"The individual is the most important minority in any country," Chinburg added.

"I want to educate," said Mary-Alice Perdichizzi, co-founder of the Brandeis Tea Party, and another former liberal turned Tea Party member. Perdichizzi began her on-campus activism as a member of her college's Republican club, but felt that they "weren't doing anything except campaigning." She feels the Tea Party is a "more invigorated conservative movement."

Read the full story at the Student Free Press.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2010/12/the-campus-tea-party-movement/67559/