I’m willing to venture off on a limb here, and suggest that the average person at least wants to believe that the constitutional guarantee of a free press provides us with an adequate check against government. Even the Founders, who had an almost Jesse Ventura-esque hatred of the press, still defended it as a necessary evil – a check against government corruption in the form of a well-educated electorate.
Yet somewhere along the line things went horribly wrong. And if ever there was a clear example of the main-stream media’s bias, it is their sycophantic obsession with the ridiculous “coffee party.” While thousands of Tea Party patriots stood in wet, frigid weather outside state capitols this month protesting a clear infringement of their liberties by a purposely-confusing piece of legislation, media outlets chose to cover the dozen or so people that hung out at coffee shops discussing the necessity of bureaucracy.
More importantly, they glossed over the many groups that have sprung up in the past few months promoting genuine discourse about the state of this country. There is no better example than the 56 Club.
The 56 Club meets at 6:00PM every Tuesday at the Perkins in Eagan. The founder of the group, John Larkin, starts every meeting by reciting the pledge of allegiance – something that has been refreshing to see still going on somewhere in America. The meetings then go one of many routes – there are guest speakers, movie screenings, open discussions, debates, and all sorts of fun activities.
What is most surprising about the group is that it was started and has been maintained, primarily through word of mouth. Mr. Larking originally had the idea of having a conservative barbecue. Yet after he started asking around, he found out there were far too many people interested for him to host the event. So he decided to do a boat ride instead. 140 people showed up late last summer and joined him on a ride down the St. Croix river.
The 56 Club is a non-partisan group, set up to honor the 56 signers of the declaration of independence. 56 men, John will remind you, that “pledged their fortunes, their lives, and most importantly, their sacred honor” to the idea of a free America. The stated purposes f the group are to “cherish the constitution,” and “safeguard America’s future.” These seemingly non-controversial goals are likely to land them on Janet Napolitano’s watch list, given the current climate toward freedom-loving individuals.
I encourage anyone who flinched at coverage of the tea parties, or choked down news stories about the coffee party, to attend a weekly meeting of the 56 Club. The meetings are open to everyone – there are people of all ages, ethnicities, and social backgrounds present. All it takes is a good idea to change the world, and the 56 Club is one of those ideas.
More information can be found on their website at http://www.the56club.com .