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From the Archives: April 15 Charlottesville Tea Party attracts protesters, onlookers, sunshine, and obscene reactions

Publisher's note: This article was originally published on on April 16, 2010. The publishing platform was discontinued July 1, 2016, and its web site went dark on or about July 10, 2016.  I am republishing this piece in an effort to preserve it and all my other contributions to since April 6, 2010. It is reposted here without most of the internal links that were in the original.

April 15 Charlottesville Tea Party attracts protesters, onlookers, sunshine, and obscene reactions
April 16, 2010 2:47 AM MST

Tax Day – April 15 – was the day that the Jefferson Area Tea Party chose to organize a protest in favor of smaller government and against high taxes. The group attracted 150 to 200 people to a demonstration at the Post Office building on Route 29 north of Charlottesville.

Jefferson Area Tea Party Rick Sincere obscenity taxes
Local radio talk show host Rob Schilling, whose weekday program appears on WINA-AM, said the program “started out with a bang,” when a counter-protester hurled obscenities at him. Police were called in to settle the situation, and the man was briefly detained. Schilling offered him the opportunity to apologize on videotape in return for dropping assault charges, which the man readily agreed to do. (The video can be seen on The Schilling Show blog.)

Ken Boyd, a member of the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors and a candidate for Congress in the Fifth District of Virginia, said that the rally represented “a great showing of Americanism and people coming together who are not happy with what’s going on in Washington and they want to make their voices heard. There are people from all walks of life, as you look around. I just think it’s great, the enthusiasm and the passion are what it’s all about.”

Boyd described the protesters’ primary message as “they got the kind of change they don’t want from the Obama administration and they would like to change it to the way it was before.”

Bill Hay, one of the founders of the Jefferson Area Tea Party who is now affiliated with congressional candidate Laurence Verga’s Fifth District campaign, said he thought the message of the rally was “smaller government, cut taxes, and throw Tom Perriello out of office.” He added that drivers passing by on Route 29 were providing “a lot of horn beeping, a lot of thumbs up, maybe a few middle fingers.”

Former Albemarle County GOP chairman Keith Drake, who now serves as communications director for the Jefferson Area Tea Party, said “This is truly a revolution. Nobody’s shooting guns, nobody’s fighting in the streets. But other than that, there’s every bit of passion you would see in a revolution, and I’m very optimistic about the future direction of our country.”

Drake explained the purpose of a new organization he co-founded (with Schilling) called IMPACT (“I’m Paying Additional County Taxes”) as “an opportunity for people who don’t think they’re paying enough [in taxes] to actually pay more, to make a donation to local county government.”

So far IMPACT has received one donation in the amount of $25.

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