Video: Etheridge expounds on virtues of civic engagement in politics; Update: Etheridge apologizes

posted at 1:36 pm on June 14, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

I’m half-tempted to give Rep. Bob Etheridge the Carol Shea-Porter Award for Hypocrisy, except that would be a little unfair to Shea-Porter. She won her New Hampshire election by making a name for herself at her predecessor’s town-hall meetings with her frequent barbed questions, but now won’t hold similar meetings to avoid getting the same treatment.  As far as I know, though, Shea-Porter hasn’t yet assaulted someone for taking her advice to get more engaged in politics.  Here’s Etheridge from three years ago, offering this advice to young adults in this Generation Engage podcast:

“Get involved,” Etheridge advises, but apparently that advice is … limited.  When a generation engages by questioning his policies and judgment, then ol’ Bobby E doesn’t seem nearly as keen on educational opportunities as he was when he worked in the school system.  Apparently, Etheridge hasn’t learned a basic political lesson in the years since: wherever a camera appears, publication on YouTube or Eyeblast will follow shortly.  Beating up a constituent will mean a lot more engagement by your constituents, and the incumbent won’t much like the results.

I’ll be speaking with Renee Ellmers, Etheridge’s opponent, on The Ed Morrissey Show today.  Don’t miss it.

Update: Dave Weigel reports that Etheridge has issued an apology:

“I have seen the video posted on several blogs,” says Etheridge. “I deeply and profoundly regret my reaction, and I apologize to all involved. Throughout my many years of service to the people of North Carolina, I have always tried to treat people from all viewpoints with respect. No matter how intrusive and partisan our politics can become, this does not justify a poor response. I have and I will always work to promote a civil public discourse.”

Despite attempts by some to defend Etheridge, what he did was indefensible.  He should have just walked away without answering if he didn’t want to “engage.”  Instead, he physically attacked someone on the street who asked him a question.

Democrats have excused themselves from holding town halls since last summer because they accused protesters of fomenting violence.  There is more violence in this video than at all of the Tea Party events I’ve attended.   Just sayin’.

Also, the “question his authoritah” was not a dig at Etheridge’s Southern accent, as one commenter objected, but a South Park reference.

Update II: Ellmer responds first to John Hawkins at Right Wing News.


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The media has two motives in defending filth like Etheridge:
1. They are on the same team.
2. They are just as scared of college kids with video cameras as he is, just for slightly different reasons.

I hope young people everywhere are asking themselves if they want to live in a totalitarian state (because that is where we will be if Democrats can hold onto power for another couple of elections) or they want to expose the hypocrisy of the “man” like thye always say they do..

drunyan8315 on June 14, 2010 at 4:14 PM

A good response was regarding teachers. If a teacher did this to a student, the teacher would be suspended.
You could only do this (what the congressman did to the student) if you were in power…a policeman could do it to a suspect, but a suspect could never do it to an officer.
A judge would never do that to person on trial, but you can bet if a person on the stand did that to a judge he would be in jail.
A little league coach wouldn’t be allowed to do what the congressman did.
If a kid asked a principle: “Do you agree with the school board policies?”, and the principle took the kids arm, stole his phone, twisted him, grabbed his neck…the principle wouldn’t be a principle anymore.

right2bright on June 14, 2010 at 4:16 PM

“how intrusive and partisan our politics can become”?

Huh? The kid stuck a microphone out and asked him a question as he walked by on the sidewalk. How the hell does he know what party the kid is from?

“I have and I will always work to promote a civil public discourse”

That’s just comedy gold. A student with a camera gets grabbed, assaulted, and grilled repeatedly with “who are you?” This was Dan Rather-quality paranoia. Not only was the discourse uncivil, he actually assaulted the kid.

Unbelievable.

Jaibones on June 14, 2010 at 4:18 PM

He’s from my home state and I couldn’t be more proud. Remember, my fellow Carolinians are also responsible for John Edwards and Brad Miller. Yep we’ve had a bumper crop of barking moonbats get elected in these here parts.

MJBrutus on June 14, 2010 at 4:47 PM

All those helping me out with the SouthPark reference, Thanks. (A link would have been nice)

And in answering It’s Vintage, Duh, no, I didn’t know. I’ve seen little if any of South Park.

I’m just confused as to why you thought this was a Southern accent thing. Since when do we talk like that?

Esthier on June 14, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Probably because I’ve never seen the SP reference and the story was about a Southern Pol and the common onomatopoeia that goofs on the Southern Upper class is to add an h at end as in Sir (Serh) I dunno, I’m confused as to why anyone who’s read even one of my comments over the years would even take the comment serious.

How about you stop feeding the sterotype “stereotype” that Southerners are completely clueless?

Elizabetty on June 14, 2010 at 1:57 PM

Really? I was kidding. If I need to sarc/ every comment, I will. Or, or we could all pull the arborous appendages from our collective fourth points of contact and lighten up a little.

Come on now, Ed forgave me for the confusion, why can’t you.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:00 PM

Hey y’all, nuff with the Southern drawl bashing now.Hear?hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 1:42 PM

Fail.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:38 PM

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:38 PM

lol

Oh the irony of you coming here and saying “fail”, after the thread you got your ass handed to you, (by me) was about me defending the South, Confederate Battle Flag and correcting your misguided notion it was started by Confederate soldiers.

I’m surprised you have the gall to even address one of my comments.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:43 PM

gall to even address one of my comments.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:43 PM

Naruto strives to bring substance. One day he will.

CWforFreedom on June 14, 2010 at 6:45 PM

I’m surprised you have the gall to even address one of my comments.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:43 PM

You imbecile, nowhere in all of the drivel you posted did you correct me on the notion that it was started by confederate soldiers. You were wrong anyways. There were confederate soldiers in the original Klan. I don’t know why you bring it up again. You had no idea what you’re talking about.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

CWforFreedom on June 14, 2010 at 6:45 PM

He’s lucky to still be commenting here and he knows it. Don’t you Naturoboy?

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:52 PM

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:50 PM

You obviously want to remember the exchange differently. I guess I would too had I been as ingorant to that bit of history as you were.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:54 PM

What I love about Nuttoboy is that he wants to come off as being anti-racist yet is hilariously prejudiced against a large group of people …hmmmm. Can you say hypocrite?

CWforFreedom on June 14, 2010 at 6:54 PM

And please stop the name calling.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:55 PM

“Six men who had once been Confederate soldiers decided to start a club. [KKK]” – from a Klan website (eck!)

“The boredom of a small-town life made six young Confederate veterans from the south gather around a fireplace one night, where they thought of a secret group. They made the group to occupy themselves and to get revenge on the many Blacks that had won their freedom in the Civil War. The group wanted to torture former slaves, because the slaves had won their freedom. The Klan members felt threatened because they thought the Blacks would start to get more powerful. In addition, many Klan members were angry because they lost their slaves.” – ThinkQuest

“The first Klan was founded in 1865 in Tennessee by veterans of the Confederate Army.” – Wiki

“The first branch of the Ku Klux Klan was established in Pulaski, Tennessee, in May, 1866. A year later a general organization of local Klans was established in Nashville in April, 1867. Most of the leaders were former members of the Confederate Army and the first Grand Wizard was Nathan Forrest, an outstanding general during the American Civil War.” – Schoolnet

Now crawl back in your hole, you ignorant clown. You know nothing about the organization and or much of anything else.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:56 PM

It was definitely an assault…but again….leave it up to the victim.

CWforFreedom on June 14, 2010 at 6:57 PM

CWforFreedom on June 14, 2010 at 6:54 PM

I know.

I am off to a night out with my girl. Naratuoboy, if you can be civil, we could discuss the exchange when I get back.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:58 PM

You obviously want to remember the exchange differently. I guess I would too had I been as ingorant to that bit of history as you were.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 6:54 PM

Dumbass, you never once proved your assertions. You made claims and did absolutely nothing to back them up. The only people that have to pat themselves on the back are the one’s who lost the argument.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:59 PM

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:56 PM

Great wiki reference. Try Tennessee politicians.

And your name calling is really getting out.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 7:00 PM

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 6:59 PM

Son, have I called you even one name yet? What is the problem?

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 7:01 PM

getting old I meant…

I’ll come back later Naturoboy.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 7:03 PM

Great wiki reference. Try Tennessee politicians.

And your name calling is really getting out.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 7:00 PM

Hey, did you notice how I included other sources on top of Wiki? By the way, moron, that quotation on Wiki is sourced, ,like most of Wiki’s content. So attacking it on the basis that it came from Wiki is stupid.

Saying “Tennessee politicians” isn’t proof, you moron.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 7:04 PM

You’d have to be a total moron to believe Tennessee politicians, and not confederate soldiers, founded the Klan. Of course the Klansmen were soldiers. Did you and that pea brain of yours Hawkdriver stop and think, “How were the Klan so skilled and effective at committing violence?” And no, the answer is not that they were good at getting laws passed (you dope). They were effective in the art of violence because THEY WERE TRAINED SOLDIERS. Makes sense, huh?

“Founder: Confederate Civil War veterans Captain John C. Lester, Major James R. Crowe, John D. Kennedy, Calvin Jones, Richard R. Reed, Frank O. McCord” – ADL.org (Anti Defamation League)

“In Pulaski, Tennessee, a group of Confederate veterans convenes to form a secret society that they christen the “Ku Klux Klan.”” – History.com

“These ex-soldiers made home made costumes and rode through town like clowns, making faces, acting silly, etc.” – PointSouth.com

“The original Klan was organized in Pulaski, Tennessee, during the winter of 1865 – 1866, by six former Confederate Army officers who gave their society a name adapted from the Greek word kuklos (“circle”).” – KnightsKKK.com

“The original Ku Klux Klan was organized by ex-Confederate elements to oppose the Reconstruction policies [...]” – Encyclopedia.com

“The most prominent of these, the Ku Klux Klan, was formed in Pulaski, Tennessee, in 1865. Originally founded as a social club for former Confederate soldiers, the Klan evolved into a terrorist organization. ” – PBS.org

“On this day in 1865, six Confederate veterans, meeting in Pulaski, Tenn., formed a secret society that they called the Ku Klux Klan.

Nathan Bedford Forrest (1821-1877), a former Confederate cavalry general and slave trader, served as the KKK’s first grand wizard or leader-in-chief.” – Politico

“In a short time, the KKK grew from a social fraternity to a violent group that sought to push back against key Reconstruction policies, such as enfranchising former slaves.”

See how that says “fraternity”? When I brought up the fact that the Klan started as a fraternity, your dumbass said you didn’t know if that was the case.

“Six men who had once been Confederate soldiers decided to start a club. [KKK]” – from a Klan website (eck!)

“The boredom of a small-town life made six young Confederate veterans from the south gather around a fireplace one night, where they thought of a secret group. They made the group to occupy themselves and to get revenge on the many Blacks that had won their freedom in the Civil War. The group wanted to torture former slaves, because the slaves had won their freedom. The Klan members felt threatened because they thought the Blacks would start to get more powerful. In addition, many Klan members were angry because they lost their slaves.” – ThinkQuest

“The first Klan was founded in 1865 in Tennessee by veterans of the Confederate Army.” – Wiki

“The first branch of the Ku Klux Klan was established in Pulaski, Tennessee, in May, 1866. A year later a general organization of local Klans was established in Nashville in April, 1867. Most of the leaders were former members of the Confederate Army and the first Grand Wizard was Nathan Forrest, an outstanding general during the American Civil War.” – Schoolnet

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 7:31 PM

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 7:31 PM

You’ve changed the point of your argument from the other week. That’s okay. I’ve saved the last comment I was going to make that night that still follows the points I was trying to make. It includes some of your first assertions.

You realize the KKK was founded by soldiers who served their country, correct? And that the group to this day has veteran members?

Narutoboy on June 9, 2010 at 12:31 AM

This is what I was driving and waiting and begging for you to say. I would say clueless but that would be stooping to your level. Here’s your answer that a lot here were itching to answer. And Narutoboy, this isn’t obscure history.

The irony is that Nathan Bedford Forrest, a Confederate Calvary Officer did became a member of the Ku Klux Klan after the Civil War. Many credit him with actually organizing it. (Not sure if he ever went to college to even understand Greek.) But I digress. No one can say for sure because of the dark secrecy of the Klan if he was a Wizard of any level, but it is a fact that their violence caused him to completely disavow himself with them and even spoke before congress in his day against them. (I’m being very general here of course, because you seem to need the macro-version) but it is accurate.

You associate the Klan with the Confederate Army. The tales of Forrest are almost taboo because of the claims by some historians of his culpability in the organization and lifelong support of the Klan and still perpetuated by people like you. Simply not true and someone as versed as you say you are should have been familiar with this history. The Klan was formed by some Democrats in Pulaski, Tennessee not too long after the war. Irony on irony, lots of carpetbaggers and opportunists from the North also became very closely associated and even members with the Klan. It’s sad that people like you cause one of the greatest military minds to have rode a horse into battle, to be relegated to a cartoon to be despised. You go further and lump the entire Army into the same boat. And once you get a little frustrated you can’t pull a Google Answer out of your fourth point of contact you get upset with me and accuse me of being in the KKK, what since I’m Army?

Sad and Ironic.

That entire piece, what you wrote and what I wrote are what we were talking about before Allah shut the thread down. Somewhere in there, you accused me of being part of the klan, twice, I’m assuming for no worse a crime than trying to argue history correctly. I could no more be part of the klan than you could. The difference between you and I though is that I could no more accuse someone of membership even as an off-hand remark. You throw out name calling and assert the worst possible opinion of people and to this day of reading your comments, I can’t imagine why. The people on this site are as close to political sameness as you as you’ll find on the web. Why you have to resort to the immature behavior you share with them is quite beyond me. You don’t know me from Adam and you haven’t manage a comment to me on this thread without sparing me from you high school hallway insults.

You make no sense.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 10:38 PM

Like I thought, you didn’t address the subject at all. I guess you just wanted to change the subject and pretend like you didn’t make misstatements about who founded the Klan. Who would want to continue on the same subject after having their argument reduced to a block cheese, riddled with holes from an onslaught of FACTS.

And like I mentioned to you earlier (or was going to), moron, I wasn’t talking about Nathan. The only correct statement you’ve made so far is that Nathan joined later on. The original group was founded as a fraternity by confederate soldiers, not Tennessee politicians, you buffoon.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 10:51 PM

You’ve changed the point of your argument from the other week

The point of my argument, simple one, was that the KKK was founded by confederate soldiers, six of which have been named in the sources I provided. You’ve continued to assert that it was the politicians that founded the group. And like usual, you’re wrong and have things totally out of order. The KKK went around terrorizing politicians/voters and gained the support of those (politicians) that supported their cause. Many pols became KKK members and vice versa. Note the word became.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 10:55 PM

Okay, here’s how this will work. I’m going to ask you to try to exchange without calling me a name. I’ll debate you to whatever level you want on this subject and what we talked about the other night. But I’m sure even you would agree that having a conversation with someone who insults you every time they open their mouth is pretty much a waste of time.

So, what’s it going to be? You want to try to find some common ground with someone who thinks like you probably 95 percent of the time, or do you want to just continue insulting someone you don’t even really know and will probably never get to know.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 11:00 PM

What is their to debate? You claimed that politicians formed the KKK. I provided source after source stating that the KKK was founded by confederate soldiers, vets. Six names were provided, of those six no one’s name was Nathan Bedford Forrest. You assumed that’s who I was talking about. I don’t even think I mentioned his name – but if I did, I was mistaken. I’ve read information and watched enough videos about the KKK to know about the dispute over Bedford’s involvement with the KKK, which is why I didn’t emphasize him.

I think the Confederates were POS’s because of their position in the war, not because a few of their soldiers were apart of founding one of America’s most notorious, and violent, terrorist groups.

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 11:10 PM

Okay Dude that’s better.

Okay, I did claim politicians were the nucleus of Confederates that formed the KKK. And there were many Confederate soldiers as you asserted. There were also Northerners that ended up in the South during Reconstruction that joined the KKK. Your original comment that I pasted above was in a debate about the Confederate Flag and quite a few commenter’s busting on you about the way you generalize Southerners. It was on the Niki Haley thread I believe.

My problem was the premise.

You realize the KKK was founded by soldiers who served their country, correct? And that the group to this day has veteran members?

Narutoboy on June 9, 2010 at 12:31 AM

And you posted that when I think someone was telling you that I couldn’t be KKK because I was in the military.

Okay, so I was asking you about the ironic origins of the group and I was really just looking for you to assert that Nathan Bedford Forest was it’s founder and Grand Wizard. You said it that night and you might not have noticed, just you reposted it tonight.

Here’s what we agree on.

The country has many black marks that we wish would never have happened. The worst was probably slavery and the next for me would probably be that a country as great as ours was one where a group of men and women could devise something as evil as the KKK. I post this much so you know I’m here. But give me a few minutes and I’ll finish the thought.

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 11:35 PM

just you reposted it tonight.

but you reposted it tonight in a cut and paste. (SOrry)

Naturoboy, I don’t know you or why you feel so strongly about Southerners, but as far as our history goes, it’s all our history. Like I was saying above, becasue of political correctness, I can’t hate the KKK and still admire Nathan Bedford Forrest because of some, (maybe not you) asserting he was the founder, was a grand wizard and was klan till the day he died. There’s other references that dispute that. ANd it’s too easy to Google and then cut and paste stuff without thinking and reading critically on the matter. I think you’re smarter than that.

SO I take a break on the keyboard for you…

hawkdriver on June 14, 2010 at 11:41 PM

Hey Narutoboy, polite question if you’re still there. Are you going to post something and putting some time in it or did you bail on the debate? We can pick this up in another forum if you want to continue.

hawkdriver on June 15, 2010 at 12:21 AM

I didn’t say Nathan Bedford Forrest was it’s founder. If you have the quote, please, show it to me. Then I will have to stand corrected. What I do recall saying is that confederate army men founded the organization, making no mention to any specific person. And I know for sure I didn’t say anything about a Grand Wizard. One of my quotes did mention that Nathan was the first Grand Wizard. What it does not say is that he was apart of the groups founding. Neither you nor I know exactly what his involvement was with the Klan. I accept my research as fact. You accept your research as fact. Whatever. Like I said, my argument was never about him. It was about the founding members being former confederate soldiers, and now you seem to agree with me on that point.

My problem is not with Southerners, per se. My problem is with the confederacy and its sympathizers. Those people who put aside the confederacy’s human rights violations and instead try and focus on their states rights advocacy. Championing states rights in attempt to continue violating someone else’s rights is nothing to be proud of. And I really don’t care how good of warriors they were. Evil isn’t always dumb and unskilled.

Narutoboy on June 15, 2010 at 1:15 AM

Naturoboy, that might be a lot of my confusion with what you were saying. Some of the things you cut and pasted, like this…

“The first branch of the Ku Klux Klan was established in Pulaski, Tennessee, in May, 1866. A year later a general organization of local Klans was established in Nashville in April, 1867. Most of the leaders were former members of the Confederate Army and the first Grand Wizard was Nathan Forrest, an outstanding general during the American Civil War.” – Schoolnet

Narutoboy on June 14, 2010 at 7:31 PM

Contain information that I wouldn’t know what you agree with or disagree with because you didn’t differentiate. When you say…

And I know for sure I didn’t say anything about a Grand Wizard. One of my quotes did mention that Nathan was the first Grand Wizard.

I would just repeat that one of your quotes did. You cut and pasted a lot of sources. Maybe just offer the things that bolster your point and qualify that the source had information you didn’t agree with.

I do remember from the thread that you said “The South” started the most famous terrorist group in US history and at one point I believe you said you thought the origins were a college fraterity. I would just say the entire South didn’t and the six young soldiers in Pulaski after the war are closer to the truth. Although as I said, they were joined by politicians who took what they formed and made it the evil that it was. So many got out when they was what it changed into. The origin of the name you were correct about coming from the Greek. I just never considered it, but it’s interesting in it’s meaning/non-meaning.

Anyway, to close, I thought the exchange as OT as it turned into would have been a really intersting conversation without the insults. I wish we could discuss Southern Soldiers a bit more but you seem pretty convicted there. Appreciate you taking the time to try to finish it.

hawkdriver on June 15, 2010 at 7:09 AM

So many got out when they “saw”…

hawkdriver on June 15, 2010 at 7:11 AM

I would just repeat that one of your quotes did. You cut and pasted a lot of sources. Maybe just offer the things that bolster your point and qualify that the source had information you didn’t agree with.

In that very quote you brought up, it says that I did not say anything about a Grand Wizard (in our past conversation or today/yesterday), but that one of my quotes did mention it. I don’t disagree that Nathan Bedford was a Grand Wizard in the Klan. What I didn’t say, however, is that he founded the Klan, which is what you accused me. I repeat, what I said was that the Klan was founded by confederate soldiers, and that is true.

It did start out as a college fraternity. They held meetings there in secret and discussed plans.

The South supported the Ku Klux Klan. The Klan, at one point or another, controlled entire cities and states. So saying that the South is responsible for the Klan is accurate. It was created in the South, by Southerners, and supported by Southerners.

six young soldiers in Pulaski after the war are closer to the truth.

Until just recently, you were telling me that this was untrue.

You seem to take offense with this fact because it harms the image of the South. That history of racism and terrorism is something that the South has to accept and can’t just sweep under the rug.

Narutoboy on June 15, 2010 at 10:49 AM

Until just recently, you were telling me that this was untrue.

Narutoboy on June 15, 2010 at 10:49 AM

Not untrue, but just not the whole story. Most references say the six were not a college frat, but six pardoned Confederate soldiers who like the rest of the surrendering Conderates, would be require to return to their homes. Most accounts I read say not only weren’t they occupied, as a student would be, but bored after the war and formed a society that wouldn’t be much differnet than a social club. Where we differ is in what version either one of us accepts as the true history after that. I’ve read much that points to former Southern politicians who pretty much consigned their prewar powers back to Southern Aristocracy under the Norths Reconstruction. The violence was born of these folks. Absoluetly no argument with your record of their behavior. But the history also says that the first KKK was very disorganized and Confederates, Politicians, and even outright criminals and illegal spirits producers had a hand in the violence they committed.

You seem to take offense with this fact because it harms the image of the South. That history of racism and terrorism is something that the South has to accept and can’t just sweep under the rug.

Narutoboy on June 15, 2010 at 10:49 AM

A little. Since I’ve been stationed at Bragg almost my entire career, I’ve come to love the South and Southern People. Honestly, the scant times I really do come across people espousing racist thought is when I visit up north.

Again, the only problem I’ve ever had in anything you say is that your comments are wholecloth with no gray areas. Any fool can assume attitudes like that. You seem to be a real smart kid though and probably better than that.

Where I alive at the time of the Civil War, I couldn’t fight for the South. Preserving the Union and destroying slavery would both be worth dying for. But not every Northerner who fought for the Union felt that way. The movie “Glory” depicts Colonel Shaw as this gladiator of abolition. He was nothing of the kind until he started his service with the 54th Mass. His letters to home to his abolitionist parents when he was in Europe are as racist and bigoted as they get. Should I ignore the heroics of Shaw because of this?

Narutoboy, the world, especially history, is not black and white.

hawkdriver on June 15, 2010 at 11:16 AM

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