To Comfort The Afflicted
And Afflict The Comfortable

To Comfort The Afflicted And Afflict The Comfortable

Monday, May 27, 2024


Oklahoma’s Turgid Tea Party Twins



RichardFricker-2The swearing in is over, the ball gowns have been put away into the trunk of yesterday, it is time to look forward.

While what’s left of the Republican Party tries to find its footing on a runway of Tea Bag grease and Democrats attempt to move forward on finances, immigration and social issues, one need only look to red-meat red-state Oklahoma to see the Tea Bag movement is alive, well and fully engaged in stemming any effort toward progress.

Resting comfortably at the bottom of the Tea Bag swag are two newly minted Oklahoma Congressmen, District 2’s Markwayne Mullin, R-Muskogee, and District 1’s Jim Bridenstine, R-Tulsa.

Or, and more to the point sadly, human suffering at the hands of nature takes a backseat to the Tea Bag ideology that got them elected.

Apparently these two bright bulbs feel it is more important to hang with what TB’s feel is a Christian tenet – “I’ve got mine, too bad about yours” – than to engage in the “help thy neighbor” concept.

Both voted against the aid bills for hurricane Sandy victims. Both felt it was their job to withhold comfort from the afflicted. Mullin and Bridenstine felt it better to ransom humanitarian aid than violated the TB ideology than to do the right thing.

Each voted against Sandy aid calling for offsets for the moneys to aid their fellow citizens. They cast these votes after having been in Congress only a couple of days. This pair has shown the nation just how concerned Oklahoma’s 1st and 2nd Districts are about those struck by natural disaster.

These sons of the Oklahoma sod apparently are oblivious to the massive damage spring tornados and floods can do to their constituencies.

We’ll see how this plays out, when Mother Nature drops some serious tornados and rains on the Sooner state in a few weeks. Then we’ll find out about givebacks in exchange for humanitarian aid.

But these fellows are a product of their political environment.

Since the President launched his gun violence initiative, there have been about 36 anti-gun control bills filed in the Legislature that opens Feb. 4. Most of these brain-piercing pieces of legislation have to do with preserving the “right” to own a gun, any gun, any amount of ammunition.

And “By God!!” to keep people – meaning the “gub’ment” – from coming in the night to take their precious firearms from their warm chubby little hands.

What has been missed by these legislators as they slurp National Rifle Association swill from the trough of myth and lies is this: no one has said anything about “taking” guns away from anyone.

Oops, missed that remedial reading class again – confiscation of firearms is nowhere to be found in any proposed legislation.

Banning certain firearms, greater background checks and limits of magazines are certainly on the table. But fools making brash pronouncements of keeping their guns at any cost are just that – “FOOLS.”

There is even one piece of profound legislation that would require mandatory imprisonment of any federal official attempting to enforce federal firearms law. Doubtful it will pass, but if it does it would be fun to see just how that plays out at the FedShed when the locals try to take custody of their agents.

Oh, yes, get your tickets now.

Enacting laws requiring liability insurance on firearms could save a lot of problems. Citizens can have their weapons, but just like automobiles they would need insurance in case they miss.

Just thinking, “Yes sir. I’m taking your daughter to dinner and a movie, and I’ve got my gun in case I have to kill someone before we get home.”

This gives new depth to dinner, movie and a shootout.

This is the thinking that shrouds the Oklahoma Legislature and the spawn it has sent to congress. There is other goofiness awaiting the public as the Tea Bag/Evangelical Taliban rides roughshod over the legislative process.

This is why Oklahoma is important to the national process. Oklahoma provides a micro view of what life would be like if TB’s and the evangelical Taliban were to achieve a majority on the national level.

No rational mind would be safe.

Richard L. Fricker lives in Tulsa, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer. His latest book, The Last Day of the War, is available at or at


Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton
Arnold Hamilton became editor of The Observer in September 2006. Previously, he served nearly two decades as the Dallas Morning News’ Oklahoma Bureau chief. He also covered government and politics for the San Jose Mercury News, the Dallas Times Herald, the Tulsa Tribune and the Oklahoma Journal.
Mark Krawczyk
Mark Krawczyk
March 9, 2023
Exceptional reporting about goings on in my home state as well as informative opinion pieces that makes people think about issues of the day...........get a SUBSCRIPTION FOLKS!!!!!!!
Brette Pruitt
Brette Pruitt
September 5, 2022
The Observer carries on the "give 'em hell" tradition of its founder, the late Frosty Troy. I read it from cover to cover. A progressive wouldn't be able to live in a red state without it.