Nation contributor and Princeton professor Melissa
talks to Keith Olbermann about the cultural anger
behind the conservative mobs
at healthcare town hall
meetings. Harris-Lacewell explains that
research has shown that in times of change, people’s anxiety about
that change can be channeled into “racial, moral, and political
intolerance.” She notes that in a crowd of people shouting angrily
about one issue, there will be some who are just opposed to anything
the other party proposes, some dealing with these deep-seated
anxieties, and some with very personal financial stakes in the game.
As Olbermann points out, people showing up to town hall meetings with
healthcare industry T-shirts on or telling reporters that their local
Republican party official told them to come are not exactly being
secretive about their motivation.

Sarah Jaffe

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