Hey, we all have bad days. I’ve been known to exhibit the temper control of Bruce Banner around bad drivers. If somebody came up to me with a camera and started asking me questions that I figured were designed to generate an embarrassing YouTube video, there’s a good chance I’d do something rude, gruff, or distinctly antisocial.
But man, Bob Etheridge needs to get some control over himself, because it seems like his first response to the above circumstance is assault.
He apologized, which is good, but the apology seems appropriate for say, flipping the bird or urging the camera wielders to attempt to procreate with themselves. I realize that prosecuting a congressman for hitting someone is an old-fashioned notion that ended with the modern era of the Imperial Congress — remember, Cynthia McKinney hit a cop with no serious consequence — but perhaps it would be refreshing for some local prosecutor to at least open up an investigation.
The Anchoress summarizes it all well: “Cameras are ubiquitous to the culture, and elected officials who (at least in theory) ‘serve’at the pleasure of the citizenry need to deal with that fact. If a citizen steps in the way and asks a question, and the elected official hasn’t the time or the inclination to parley, he can say that; he can ignore them; he or she can crack a joke or manage a pleasant brush off (Democrat Congressman Barney Frank, to his credit, is a master at the pleasant brush off); he can even say, ‘get away, kid, ya bother me,’ ala W. C. Fields, but he or she may not get physical. Is congress feeling ambushed? Does congress perhaps have an inkling that the public — watching the profligate spending of ‘representatives’ who have enacted legislation contrary to their wishes — is feeling ambushed, as well? For a populace feeling ambushed by a bait-and-switch, ran-as-moderate-governs-as-radical-prince president and his congress, ‘do you fully support the Obama agenda’ is a perfectly relevant question for this election year. I am wondering why the face of the ‘student’ is blocked out, though, and who he is.”
Moe Lane: “This is why you need to have two cameras. The first one, to record being assaulted by a sitting Congressman (Bob Etheridge, D, NC-02) . . . and a second one, to record the person recording being assaulted by a sitting Congressman (Bob Etheridge, D, NC-02).”
David Codrea, at the Baltimore Examiner, notices, “Etheridge displays the all-too typical attitude of a public ‘official’ as opposed to a public servant. I can’t help wondering if a belief that he can slap constituents around with impunity might be one of the reasons he’s big on citizen disarmament, having been rated ‘F’ by both the National Rifle Association and by Gun Owners of America.”
The Democrats distribute talking points that include nothing resembling, “you know, Bob shouldn’t have done that.”