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Tea Party And Occupy Members Find Common Ground In Memphis

Mid-South Tea Party member Jan Allen stands by front of the sign-in desk before Thursday's meeting near Memphis.
Adrian Sainz
/
AP
Mid-South Tea Party member Jan Allen stands by front of the sign-in desk before Thursday's meeting near Memphis.

An Associated Press reporter was on hand last night in Tennessee when two representatives from the Occupy Memphis movement sat down with about 75 members of the Mid-South Tea Party and had what's described as a "sometimes strained and confrontational, but mostly civil discussion."

Occupy Memphis member Tristan Tran, at the meeting.
Adrian Sainz / AP
/
AP
Occupy Memphis member Tristan Tran, at the meeting.

According to the AP, "the factions saw eye-to-eye on some issues and clashed on others. And, while the young speakers didn't change many minds, they did earn praise from the tea party members for their passion, honesty and courage."

The points of agreement:

-- "Their perception that the government and politicians no longer listen to and serve the people they represent.

-- "Their stances against taxpayer-sponsored government bailouts and 'crony capitalism.' "

Reaching at least some consensus is notable given the suspicions before the meeting. The Mid-South Tea Party's website, for example, prominently displays side-by-side photos of Tea Party and Occupy rallies that note the many American flags at one (the Tea Partiers') and absence of them at the other.

This all raises a question:

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.
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