Thousands protest at Tax Day tea party

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 16, 2009

Thousands of people gathered Wednesday in Hoover to protest big government and President Barack Obama’s tax policy.

Veteran’s Park off Valleydale Road was the site for one of the many Tax Day tea party protests going on across America.

“We’ve seen our liberties just being chopped away,” said Suzanne Green. “Everybody just felt we had to do something.”

Many protesters brought homemade signs to help get their messages across.

Some read: “Stop the War on Capitalism,” “Restore the republic, abolish the income tax,” and “Not a penny more.”

Many also took aim at President Obama: “I’ll keep my country, you keep the change” and “One Big Awful Mistake America.”

Organizers estimate between 5,000 and 7,000 people attended the rally.

“That was kind of my dream,” said Dorthey Knight. “I wanted us to have a big crowd.”

Green and Knight, both Shelby County residents, coordinated the tea party, which garnered national exposure.

Radio personalities Rick Burgess and Bill “Bubba” Bussey of “The Rick and Bubba Show” worked as correspondents for Sean Hannity’s show on the Fox News Channel. Other cities featured Wednesday on the cable news show included New York and Atlanta.

Several conservative speakers also addressed the crowd throughout the three-hour protest.

Tim James, a Republican candidate for Alabama governor in 2010, talked about bailing out banks and the rising national debt.

“It has to stop,” said James, a Greenville businessman. “Your children will have to work more hours in their day to pay their share of that debt. It has to stop today.”

James hopes the adrenaline stirred by the tea parties will continue into next year’s elections.

“I believe these tea parties are a spark,” James said. “(The election) will bear the fruit of what has been planted.”