While Democrats, unions and the liberal media hail the Occupy movement that is sweeping the nation, other more conservative groups are starting to take exception and criticize the protesters.
One such group is calling themselves the 53 percenters based upon the statistic that 53 precent of Americans pay federal income tax. Erick Erickson, founder of RedState.org came up with the slogan, ‘We are the 53 percent,’ to counter the 99 percenters in the Occupy Wall Street movement that claim to represent all Americans. Erickson, along with filmmaker Mike Wilson and director of Texas Public Policy Foundation, Josh Trevino banded together to promote the idea on the popular blog site Tumblr. You can find their posts at http://the53.tumblr.com/.
The Tumblr blog states that 53 percent of American pay income taxes and that there is a very high probability that the 99 percenters are largely made up of the 46 percent who don’t pay federal income taxes. On his first blog, Erickson wrote, “Suck it up you whiners. I am the 53 percent subsidizing you so you can hang out on Wall Street and complain.”
Several other contributors to Tumblr have posted, “I don’t blame Wall Street because it doesn’t matter what Wall Street or anyone else does. I am responsible for my own destiny. I will succeed or fail because of me and me ALONE.” And, “I take risks so my kids can have a better life. Not so you can sit on your [expletive] at my expense.”
We are the 53% co-founder Trevino wrote, “Even if you’ve had a difficult time, that this is America, and there is still value in hard work, and individual self-reliance…times are hard, we are in the worst economic crisis since Great Depression, but nonetheless, the same American values are really the way out of it.”
Although the 53 percenter blog has just been recently launched, it already is coming under criticism by some stating that their 53 percent representation is actually a misrepresentation. These critics state that many of the 46 percent that don’t pay federal income tax is made up of those whose income is too low and others that have received tax breaks given to the elderly, students and welfare recipients.
The critics of the 53 percent stand fail to say anything about the misrepresentation of the 99 percenters. From what I have seen, the vast majority of Americans do not consider themselves to be part of the 99 percent movement. Many middle class Americans place themselves somewhere in between the 99 percenters and the 1 percent being protested against.
I am not wealthy by any means and have struggled financially all my life, but I mostly blame myself for some bad decisions I’ve made along the way. But I definitely do not consider myself to be associated with the 99 percenters camping outside Wall Street. America is and always has been a free market nation built upon a capitalistic way of life. And as such, I would be much more likely to be associated with the 53 percenters and not the 99 percenters.