Perriello Home Targeted by Tea Party Terrorists
It appears that the Tea Party movement has evolved from screaming epithets and spitting on people to acts of mayhem.
Federal and local authorities are investigating a severed gas line at the home of U.S. Rep. Tom Perriello’s brother, discovered the day after Tea Party activists posted the address online so opponents could “drop by” and “express their thanks” for Perriello’s vote in favor of health care reform.
The gas line connected a propane tank to a gas grill on the home’s screened-in porch, according to sources in Tom Perriello’s office.
The incident is being viewed as an attempted threat to a member of congress, sources said.
Two members of the conservative Tea Party groups in Danville and Lynchburg posted the home’s address online Monday, mistakenly believing it belonged to the congressman. The home actually belongs to Bo Perriello, the congressman’s older brother.
The local FBI field office and the Albemarle County fire marshal are investigating the incident. Police have stepped up patrols in the area as well.
Danville Tea Party leader Nigel Coleman was one of the two activists who posted Bo Perriello’s address online Monday.
“This is Rep. Thomas Stuart Price Perriello’s home address,” Coleman wrote Monday. “… I ain’t holding back anymore!!”
According to the Danville Register & Bee site, when Coleman learned that the address actually belonged to the congressman’s brother, he responded on a blog: “Do you mean I posted his brother’s address on my Facebook? Oh well, collateral damage.”
Coleman told The Daily Progress today that he is “shocked” and “almost speechless” at the possibility that someone would sever the propane line to Perriello’s brother’s house.
“I obviously condemn these actions,” he said. “I would hope that people aren’t thinking about doing anything crazy. We just wanted people to get close to the congressman and have their voices heard. Violence is not going to answer anything. I’m a little shocked and amazed.”
Not having evidence to the contrary, I’m willing to consider the possibility that Coleman is merely a complete idiot unable to conjure up the predictable consequence of sending out the address of political foes to enraged lunatics.
Thankfully, it appears “sending a message” was the extent of the damage. This time.
“While officials are not willing to characterize the exact nature of the incident because of the ongoing investigation, it did not involve an immediate threat to occupants of the residence. However officials are taking the incident very seriously and conducting a vigorous investigation,” the statement said.
But this movement is about to jump the shark unless it gets some adult supervision, stat.
As Ta-Nehesi Coates noted yesterday with regard to ACORN’s going out of business,
If you really believe that you’re facing a vile enemy armed with an array of dirty tricks, the correct action is not to be institutionally sloppy and then decry the deep evil of your opponents. You knew that going in. The correct response is to run your ship that much tighter.
Jonathan Bernstein‘s post applying the same logic to the Tea Partiers now seems eerily prescient:
Hey, Tea Party types, and conservatives in general: the same goes for you. No, you’re not all the kind of people who would throw slurs at John Lewis…so stop allowing signs and posters at your events that make you look like a group that would be fine with that. Stop using language that stops oh so carefully short of inciting people to violence. Run a tighter ship.
As to whether these ships can be run tightly, much less who would do it, though, I’m less sanguine.