Helen Glover of 920 WHJJ
GLENN: Helen Glover is with us from our affiliate in Providence, Rhode Island, 920 WHJJ. Helen, tell me about the tea party that happened this July 4th?
CALLER: Good morning, Glenn. Well, you know, the tea party movement’s growing across the country and certainly here in Rhode Island, one of the most liberal states in the union, there’s really been a real grassroots effort to get this tea party going. One April 15th and another one in June and then we put together a float for the Bristol Fourth of July parade which by the way is the oldest parade in the country. And it was pretty much made clear to the Rhode Island tea party association that they weren’t wanted in the parade to begin with and
CALLER: Well, because apparently we’re a subversive group, Glenn. We’re on the terror watch list.
GLENN: Hang on, I’m looking at the picture. I’m looking at the picture. This is from the HJJ website. Is that the picture of everybody dressed in colonial clothes that looks like a giant boat?
CALLER: Yeah, it’s actually the British slip the beaver that was ransacked by the colonists they Boston tea party in 1773. Now, we were told that we could not dress as Indians. I don’t know why because the original colonists dressed as Indians. They said we could not do that. So we said, fine, we’ll dress as patriots.
GLENN: Hold it, hold it. Is there a possibility that I mean, let’s take a wild guess here on why you couldn’t because it would be offensive to Native Americans?
CALLER: Well, I’m sure that was the reason. However, there were other floats with other people in the parade that were dressed as Indians. Some of them are legitimate Native Americans but others were not. But that, you know, the stipulation was only put on our float.
CALLER: Oh, it gets better.
CALLER: I asked for a PA system. I said, you know, because let’s face it, they are looking for a reason to kick is out of the parade. So let’s just have a PA system on the boat and play on the float and pay patriotic music because you can’t go wrong with that, right? I thought.
CALLER: Then we were told we couldn’t have a PA system on the boat.
CALLER: No reason given, but
GLENN: I’m sure all of the other floats, none of them had a PA system.
CALLER: All of the other floats if they wanted them had them.
GLENN: That’s a different parade. I’m sure you are thinking of a different parade.
CALLER: That’s right. Well, of course, we were also told we couldn’t throw tea bags off the float because that’s dangerous. It could put an eye out.
GLENN: Well, if they had knives in the tea bags. They don’t know. Maybe you had some of those Chinese death stars.
GLENN: They were and you were throwing the tea bags out like that. They didn’t know.
CALLER: Even wet a tea bag’s not going to cause bodily harm.
GLENN: Hang on just a second because I know that I have been in parades before where you are not supposed to throw out candy because it’s dangerous because people run to the street and then they, you know, get hit by a, you know, a giant float.
CALLER: Completely understandable. Completely understandable and that is in the regulation that the tea party, the application that they signed and agreed to those rules, that’s fine. We adhere to those rules.
GLENN: Okay. So did anybody else throw things at them?
CALLER: Of course they did. Of course they did. Lollipops off one float, flyers announcing a roller derby schedule. There were flyers to and again I can understand if they don’t want somebody soliciting during a parade but there was one dairy that was allowed to hand out information if you want to sign up for home delivery of milk, eggs and the like. Apparently that was okay.
GLENN: What wasn’t okay? Did you throw the tea bags at people?
CALLER: No. We didn’t know.
GLENN: What was the problem?
CALLER: Glenn, I’m a rule follower and I made that very clear when I got involved with the parade and the float. I said, I don’t want to be the reason you are thrown out. I obey the rules. That’s just one of those quirks I have. So I said I’m not going to do anything that’s against the rules. So we didn’t throw anything off that float.
GLENN: And you didn’t dress as Indians.
CALLER: I didn’t dress as an Indian
GLENN: And you didn’t have a sound system.
CALLER: But they gave us a bullhorn. And that was my other fear, Glenn, because I tend to be, kind of like you, I sometimes am not politically correct, especially on my show.
CALLER: So I said, you know what, maybe the safest thing is for me not to use that bullhorn. So I gave it to a few other people but they really
GLENN: That was a mistake.
CALLER: Well, they thought maybe reading some quotes from the founding fathers. But, you know, you are going along a parade route with a bullhorn. That’s not the same as a PA system. You are not going to be able to understand, you know, something that Ben Franklin said that’s maybe a couple of sentences long. So I thought, okay, maybe simply reciting the "Pledge of Allegiance" keeping out the subversive line one nation under God. And I thought, you know what, I’m just going to stick to real quick bullet points. You are going by in a parade, people only have a couple of seconds to absorb something. So I said something that came from the house of parliament when one of the British politicians said, "Quite frankly, sir, you’ve run out of our money." I thought that’s a good one, no more taxes, we’ve been taxed enough, hold your elected officials to a higher standard, make them accountable. That was the kind of stuff I said.
GLENN: This is crazy. Stu, crazy. I mean, Helen is crazy.
CALLER: Radical stuff.
PAT: Crazy talk.
GLENN: How are you not in handcuffs?
CALLER: Well, strange as it seems when I found out we were kicked out of the parade the first thing I said was oh, no. And Marina Peterson who was the first one who got the call on this was told it wasn’t because of something I said which I’m relieved at although, you know, I can stand behind anything I said. I made sure it was not political. We were thrown out of the parade because a gentleman who was not on the float, by the way, had been walking up and down the parade route for about an hour and a half with his 10 year old, 11 year old son handing out little pocket you’ve probably seen them, little pocket guide of the Constitution Bill of Rights.
GLENN: Oh, my gosh!
GLENN: What, are you crazy? That thing is so ancient and distorted. I mean, it was an updated version of the Constitution, wasn’t it? It wasn’t like I didn’t include, like, the preamble and all the other stuff.
CALLER: No, unfortunately it was the whole shebang, the Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence and Constitution.
GLENN: Oh, jeez.
STU: That’s extremism. Do we have a warrantless wiretap?
GLENN: Hold on just a second. Are we tracing the call? We are tracing the call? Just stay on the line with me. Just talk to me. So what else is happening?
CALLER: I think the Secret Service are at the door right now.
GLENN: So they kicked you out because you were handing out the Constitution.
CALLER: I believe, Glenn, the words were, "Don’t even bother wasting the stamp for an application next year. You are…" and not just kicked out, Glenn. We are banned for life. It’s like double secret probation in Animal House. We are banned.
GLENN: The oldest parade in the country.
CALLER: You got it.
GLENN: For the Fourth of July.
CALLER: Banned for life.
GLENN: You are banned for life.
GLENN: For handing out… the Fourth of July parade… the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
CALLER: Yeah. They said
GLENN: What is the name of the organization that does this little parade?
CALLER: It is the Bristol Fourth of July parade committee. And believe me, that is a group that you know what, that is ironclad. Apparently they can make law, enforce it and you have no recourse.
GLENN: Stu, could you get a hold of the I tell you what
CALLER: Good luck.
GLENN: Have one of the producers at Fox get a hold of them and let them know that we would love to hear the explanation of this.
CALLER: Yeah, good luck. Good luck.
GLENN: Oh, no, no, no. Make sure they know if they don’t appear on the show, somebody will appear for them.
GLENN: Can you do that?
GLENN: And report back to me tomorrow. Hopefully they can find it in their schedule in the next couple of days. Helen, thank you for bringing this to our attention. You stay in touch with me and I’ll let you know. I’ll let you know because we’ll open up the show at any time they can be on to tell us because they must have had a good excuse.
CALLER: Oh, absolutely, yes.
GLENN: And I’m sure America would love to hear it and I sure would because I can’t trust you, Helen.
CALLER: Oh, no.
GLENN: You are a crazy woman.
GLENN: You were dressed up in colonial garb on a big boat in a Fourth of July parade, you know. Next thing you know, you’ll be dressing up like an Indian. We can’t trust you. So we’ll get a hold of the parade people and we’ll keep you up to speed on this.