Tea Party Express at Civil Rights District in Birmingham Alabama–We Should Be Outraged

Posted by Guest Contributor alpolitics from Progressive Electorate

Today the Tea Party Express rolled into Birmingham, Alabama – my hometown. Probably not a big surprise to anyone. But I’m absolutely shocked at the display that occurred in Kelly Ingram Park – right in the middle of the historic Civil Rights museum. Within feet of the Birmingham Civil Rights Museum and the 16th Street Baptist Church – where four little girls were killed on September 15, 1963. In the middle of Kelly Ingram Park where Dr. Martin Luther King and Fred Shuttlesworth organized demonstrations for real freedom. Where Bull Connor turned the firehouses and dogs on children.

Here’s Kelly Ingram Park on May 3, 1963


Here was Kelly Ingram Park on November 9, 2009

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One man had the audacity to say:

“I’m here for freedom,” said Pinson resident Tim Emala. “We need to get back to the Constitution. We seemed to have strayed away from it. The politicians need to read it.”

You are talking about freedom in the same place that people marched because they were forced to sit on the back of the bus, and use separate restrooms and attend separate schools. This could have been held anywhere in Birmingham but it was held in the cradle of the Civil Rights District. Where people marched and protested for real rights. And now they are protesting against health care which should be a right not a privilege.

You had this stupid rally using kids as props within a stones throw of where four little girls died simply because of the color of their skin.

Here are some images of statutes that are actually in the park to memorialize the significance of what occurred in the park during the 1960’s and the civil rights movement.

Three ministers

The three ministers statue in Kelly Ingram Park representing N.H. Smith, John T. Porter and A.D. King, who led a sympathy march on Palm Sunday in 1963 in support of jailed civil rights leaders: Revs. Martin Luther King Jr., Fred Shuttlesworth and Ralph Abernathy


This sculpture is dedicated to the foot soldiers of the Birmingham Civil Rights Movement who braved the dogs.

A statue of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. looking towards the 16th Street Baptist Church.

A statue of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. looking towards the 16th Street Baptist Church.

Charlene Cannon of Birmingham does a good job summing up her feelings, mine and I hope yours…

“They say they’re against taxation, it looks like it’s a No-Obama rally. My thing is they could have had this anywhere else other than Kelly Ingram Park”

Please check out the poignant video of Ms. Cannon here. More pictures from today can be viewed here. Another slide show here.

Related Articles

Tea Party Express makes stop in Birmingham’s Kelly Ingram Park

44-D Update

tea partyAlabama Republican gubernatorial hopeful Tim James attended the 32nd stop on the Tea Party Express national bus tour in Birmingham, Alabama. From the picture he looks as if he thoroughly enjoyed today’s Tea Party Rally in the Civil Rights district. It would be interesting to know what comment he has about the rally being held in such a hallowed place.


Filed under Birmingham, AL, Civil Rights Movement, Partisan Politics, Politics, Republicans, Uncategorized

15 responses to “Tea Party Express at Civil Rights District in Birmingham Alabama–We Should Be Outraged

  1. thelcster

    i’m hoping this is a joke audiegrl…
    using kids to spew your political ideals has never really sat well with me. these parents took their kids out of school for this? i am all for freedom of speech, (yes even when i don’t like what the other party has to say) but holding their rally here leaves a bad taste in my mouth. you hate obama? fine, but have some respect. did they do this at Gettysburg or some other tragic American site? or is it reserved for civil rights sites? all i can say is that i hope the express never comes my way. i guarantee they won’t like what i have to say to them about this past protest location.

    • audiegrl

      No joke LCster. The photos are real. This was the ultimate gesture of disrespect. On a day when right-to-life wingnuts were protesting in front of Malia and Sasha Obama’s grade school, nothing in politics will surprise me at this point.

      Sadly, looking at the Birmingham photos, I had to wonder how many of the older protesters where actually ‘*there*’ in 1963? They of all people, know what the Civil Rights district stand for, they lived through those time. Shame on them.

      • David

        Isn’t Kelly Ingram Park a public park? Can’t Americans assemble there peacefully and fight for their rights? I think it was a fine choice. Fighting against “Big Government” is something everyone should be engaged in. No one there was disrespectful. Kelly Ingram park reminded everyone that freedom is precious and a God given right. No Government can give it to you or take it away!

        • what rights are you referring to? Did anyone stop the protest? The right I am fighting for is the right to access affordable health care, Don’t tread on MY rights.

  2. salaw

    I attended this rally today, not because of any hate towards Obama. Rather, it is because I see a government that has to much power and that is trying to pass a government run healthcare that will require every american to buy it or risk going to jail. It felt ironic to me that yes, we gathered at a place at the heart of the civil rights movement. Only this time, it wasn’t about race, but rather seeking freedom for all from a federal government that seeks to control our lives.

    • “a government run healthcare that will require every american to buy it or risk going to jail”

      have you actually read the bill? your statement is patently FALSE…

      the lie is that someone doesn’t pay the penalty they will go to jail. The only laws that apply to that are existing IRS, laws. No new laws are implemented in this bill.

      “Rep. Camp Falsely Stated Bill Would Send People Without Coverage To Jail”


    • audiegrl

      I am sorry salaw, but you can not ‘co-op‘ the civil rights movement for the Tea Party cause. There is no comparison.

      “Only this time, it wasn’t about race, but rather seeking freedom for all from a federal government that seeks to control our lives”

      The civil rights movement was about seeking justice from a federal government that allowed it’s African-American citizens to be systematically discriminated against and beaten and lynched by fellow citizens.

      As I said, there is no comparison. Having the rally in the civil rights district, when you could have had it at any of the other six parks in Birmingham was both insensitive and tone-deaf.

  3. thelcster

    i’m going to have o side with geo and audie on this one guys. free speech is free speech, but have some respect. i have no personal beef with the tea baggers. believe what you think is right but don’t desecrate such a sacred place.

  4. Janniel

    Free speech, or not, this is sickening, and purposefully disrespectful of dead children and a nation’s struggle to overcome bigotry….look at these examples of stupidity, ignorance, and outright devilishness.

  5. Fantastic post. I used to spend alot of my time boating and watching sports. It was probably the best period of my young life and your article kind of reminded us of that time. Thanks

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  7. birmingham how did we let this happen?

  8. Throughout the grand design of things you get an A+ with regard to effort. Exactly where you lost me personally was first in the specifics. As it is said, the devil is in the details… And it could not be more accurate here. Having said that, allow me reveal to you what exactly did do the job. Your text is certainly extremely persuasive and that is most likely why I am taking an effort in order to opine. I do not really make it a regular habit of doing that. Next, despite the fact that I can easily see the leaps in logic you make, I am not sure of how you seem to connect the details which inturn help to make the actual final result. For right now I will subscribe to your position however hope in the near future you link the facts better.

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