The tea party: Convenient scapegoats

Trent Humphries, who was president of Tucson’s tea party organization at the time of the Giffords shootings, said he lived around the corner from an older couple, both of whom were shot, one fatally, making the situation that much more unbearable.

“They were friends, it wasn’t a political thing for me,” he said. “But my family received death threats, we had sheriffs’ cars outside, because of stupid comments made … in the press.”

In the aftermath of the Giffords shooting, said Humphries, the media compounded the situation by expecting tea party members to weigh in immediately as opponents of gun control.

“[The press] came to me and asked, ‘What should we do about guns?’” Humphries said. “Of course they go to the tea party guy. I said, ‘How about you give us a chance to bury our dead, give us a chance to suffer through what we need to suffer through, and then we can get to politics.’”