Via Hot Air, meet Congressman Bob Etheridge (D-NC2). He’s a friendly person and very easy to talk to:
Kid: Hi, Congressman! How are you? Do you fully support the Obama agenda?
Etheridge: Who are you? Who are you? [slaps away camera] Who are you? [grabs kid’s wrist] Who are you? [reaches to slap kid’s face] Who are you? [Update: I thought Etheridge was trying to slap the kid, but he was actually taking the kid’s phone. He still has it in his hand as he walks away.]
Kid: I’m here for a project, sir.
Etheridge: [not letting go of kid’s wrist] Tell me who you are.
Kid: We’re just here for a project, sir.
Etheridge: [still not letting go] Tell me who you are.
Kid: We’re just here for a project.
Etheridge: I don’t care about that, tell me who you are.
Kid: I’m just a student, sir.
Etheridge: From? Tell me who you are.
Kid: We’re just students. That’s all we are.
Etheridge: I have a right to know who you are if [unintelligible].
Kid: All we are is students.
Other kid: We’re in a public place.
Etheridge: So am I. Who are you? Who are you?
Kid: Please let go of my arm, sir.
Etheridge: [grabs kid’s neck] Who are you?
Kid: Sir! Sir! Sir! Please! Please let go of me.
Etheridge: Who are you?
I can’t be positive, but I think Etheridge wanted to know who that kid was.
Notice how polite the youngster was the whole time? Even as he’s getting manhandled by this creep, he calls the man “Sir.”
So, being connected to Obama is now officially an insult. First we’re not supposed to call Obamacare “Obamacare,” and now merely asking a Democrat if he’s down with Obama’s program can trigger… that. Hope and change!
P.S. Case in point: Mediaite’s Colby Hall says asking a congressman if he supports the Obama agenda is an “inflammatory and guerrilla interview tactic,” and that Etheridge’s response is “only partially defensible.” And Hall wonders “if we really want an army of aggressive college kids accosting public servants until someone eventually loses their cool.” Yeah, how dare this little punk ask a question of an elected official. I wonder if Colby Hall would feel the same way if Etheridge was a Republican?
P.P.S. And according to the completely impartial and unbiased Dave Weigel, Etheridge is merely “acting strangely,” and these kids have created “the first conservative meme of the week.” I guess it’s only assault if it’s against a designated victim group.
P.P.P.S. Along the same lines, Politico’s Glenn Thrush writes, “Breitbart strikes again: Catches lawmaker ‘assault’ on cameraman.” We can’t know if it was an actual assault until we can positively identify the, ahem, “victim.” Although he’s probably somebody we don’t like, since the video is featured at one of Breitbart’s sites.
P.P.P.P.S. CBS is the latest with the sneer quotes: “Bob Etheridge Altercation With ‘Student’ Caught on Tape, Goes Viral.” Do they think Etheridge was correct when he snarled, “I have a right to know who you are”? Were the kids lying when they claimed to be students? If so, does that justify Etheridge’s actions?