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TEA'd Off Americans

Monica Quiroga’s remarks to the Wilson County TEA Party audience

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Monica Quiroga
April 22, 2009 | 4,377 views | 30 comments

My name is Monica Quiroga. Up until just a couple of weeks ago, when I married my husband, Luis, I was a single, Hispanic, young mother of two. My children, Lynette and Rico, are here with us tonight to witness the beginning of our revolution. In fact, I grew up on the West side of San Antonio to a single Hispanic mother of two who also had her share of economic challenges. I am here to tell you I should not be standing here in front of you today, if you read the statistics and believe what you see in the media.

As a waitress for many years, I always knew there was more for me. As a mother at the age of 19, and again at the age of 25, I knew I had to escape the cycle of poverty.

So, at the age of 25 -- with no money and a dogged determination to succeed -- I used the last $80 in my pocket -- not someone else’s pocket -- and went to college. Was I scared? You’re darn right I was scared! But I figured it was better to be scared than broke for the rest of my life. After all, I had children to raise.

I guess I wasn’t smart enough to know that someone else could have paid my rent, my utilities, my child care, and my meals. Or maybe I was just too hard-headed -- raising kids on your own gives you incredible survival instincts.

I know now: I do government and public affairs for one of the largest social service agencies in the state. Over 50% of our clients are elderly or disabled, but a great number of our customers are single mothers with little hope, as I was in my youth. The difference is that these young mothers have not been shown how to break the cycle of poverty. I make it my mission every day to help them do just that.

I hope that you are all here today to express the same concerns that I have -- the fear that more of our money is being spent by our elected representatives than we can afford.

I come to you today to tell you that I for one can no longer afford to send 50% of my income to someone else. I cannot afford to pay someone in Austin or D.C. to spend my money for me. I cannot afford to bankrupt my children’s future ... nor your children’s future ... nor your neighbors’ children’s future.

In preparation for today, I perused the inaugural speech of President Ronald Reagan in 1981 to get myself reacquainted with the government of my childhood; to see just how far we have come in my lifetime. You see, I was born in 1975; the Reagan administration was my first introduction to politics.

Maybe you’re thinking that 1981 was a long time ago. How can the administration of 1981 be relevant to today’s discussion?

Well, almost three decades after Reagan’s inaugural speech, the sentiment remains: We the People have not only a right but a duty to demand that our government be responsible stewards of taxpayer dollars, to guard the sovereignty of our states and of our nation, and to limit the intrusion into our most sanctified unions -- that of family, of religion, and of free thought.

Allow me to read to you some of my favorite excerpts from that day:

In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem. From time to time, we’ve been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. Well, if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? All of us together, in and out of government, must bear the burden. The solutions we seek must be equitable, with no one group singled out to pay a higher price ...

We are a nation that has a government -- not the other way around. And this makes us special among the nations of the Earth. Our government has no power except that granted it by the people. It is time to check and reverse the growth of government, which shows signs of having grown beyond the consent of the governed ...

Now, so there will be no misunderstanding, it’s not my intention to do away with government. It is rather to make it work -- work with us, not over us; to stand by our side, not ride on our back. Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it.

I am not saying to you that all of Reagan’s policies were perfect. What I am saying is that, like 1981, this country is faced with challenges on all fronts: the economic front, the housing front, the unemployment front, and most of all, above all else, the political front.

No longer can we afford the tax and spend policies of our government -- from the past eight years or the current administration. No longer can we as Americans, and I include myself, stand by idly and allow our sloth, our ineptitude, and our complacency to stop the wheels of capitalism. No longer can we turn a blind eye to those travesties occurring at our local, state, and federal level.

I am here to tell you that our forefathers got it wrong when they stated that all men are created equal -- they are not created equal. Much like ships, we are all created differently. Some of us simply float in shallow water, afraid to leave the port. Some capsize in turbulent seas, unable to stand up to the challenge of the winds. Some sink into the depths, never to be seen again. But some -- indeed, a rare few -- face the challenges of turbulence, stand up to the winds, and sail into eternal victory.

For those few, those who choose success and prosperity, those who face the challenges and turbulence -- the obstacles are daunting. The more money you earn, the more our elected officials take away. And if you are smart enough to have been successful in spite of their best efforts to rob you -- this administration wants to raise taxes on your estate.

After all, you can’t protest if you’re dead, right? I don’t see why not -- if they let you vote, surely they will let you protest.

In closing, I want you to ponder the following math problem. If you have 100 people, and half of them are complete slaves, you have 50% slavery, right? And that slavery, as time has shown us, is called sinful by the American people. However, if you have 100 people who are half slaves, you still have 50% slavery. How is this called democracy?

Thank you all for taking the time out of your evenings to be with us tonight. May the Lord bless each of you, and may you never forget what I quoted to you earlier: We are a nation that has a government -- not the other way around.
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Your Opinions and Comments

May 26, 2009 10:46am
RudyV, she doesn't have to commit to anything to say that she would do everything in her power to ensure the 4A corp kept the process fair, open, and in the best interest of the community. Instead she says "The vision of ... More ›

May 23, 2009 11:01am
Hey SK, Monica spoke intelligently. She is not willing to talk in bumper sticker quips. What do you want her to say "Read my lips....blah blah,,". At this point she does not know the details of what she will have to ... More ›

Monica Quiroga  
May 22, 2009 7:27am
Excellent question, Floresville Mom. The next 4A meeting is Tuesday, May 26 at 6:00 p.m. The 4A Corporation meets at City Hall. This will be the final meeting of the incumbent Board; meeting dates and times for the incoming ... More ›

Floresville Mom  
May 21, 2009 10:15pm
When is the next 4A Corp. meeting and where is it held?

May 20, 2009 10:48am
Careful Monica. You are sounding like a typical politician with your last response to Floresville Mom. If we the public can't voice concerns other than in formal board settings, why should we even attend things like the Tea ... More ›

Floresville Mom  
May 20, 2009 9:12am
Monica, I am encouraged by your response. The best part is that you have made a acommittment to be "..willing to gather input from other community members..." It will be refreshing to see if an appointed-board in ... More ›

Monica Quiroga  
May 20, 2009 8:40am
Dear Floresville Mom First, let me thank you for your congratulatory comments. I am humbled by your confidence in my committment to responsible community service. Next, let me address an issue that I am certain will rise ... More ›

Floresville Mom  
May 20, 2009 12:11am
Monica, Congrats on being chosen for the 4A Board of Directors to build the community center. I hope you will be just as vigilant and articulate in the board meetings as you have been on the blogs. I also hope you don't ... More ›

May 6, 2009 9:23am
Carter - Thank you for being specific. The function of the Executive Branch is to execute the laws passed by congress. Congress allocates the money and determines the purpose. It says to the Defence Department here ... More ›

Carter Thomas  
May 4, 2009 7:31pm
Rudy, You don't have to agree, bu most scholars agree that the D of I (as you refer to it) was the first legislative act of our Founders. But even if it wasn't, it surly was a statement of how they viewed government and it is ... More ›

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