Marybeth Hicks

Of course, in typical political fashion, his statement includes a passive-aggressive excuse for his barbaric behavior: “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.”

“Intrusive and partisan”? Nice try, Rep. Etheridge. You’re a United States congressman walking down a public street in Washington, DC., and you simply were asked if you supported the agenda of your party’s president.

In a country that values free speech as paramount to civil public discourse, those young men had every right to ask the question, and the video proves they did so respectfully and courteously.

The veiled attempt to blame the students for provoking him is yet another example of the lack of character that is rampant among our elected officials.

To be clear, Etheridge’s “reaction” to the congressman-on-the-street interview is called “assault” in the District of Columbia and every other jurisdiction in the USA.

As hokey as it sounds, the thousands of college students who have descended upon the nation’s capital – reflecting all political points of view – represent the future of our country.

The disrespect exhibited by Rep. Etheridge, not only for the young men involved in the incident but for all young people who passionately engage in civics, is a pathetic glimpse into the real world that is Washington.

Maybe, given that he’s running for re-election, Etheridge didn’t want to go on record as supporting the president’s agenda.

Then again, maybe he does, and he was just out looking to kick someone’s…er…well, you know.

Civil public discourse sure is taking a beating lately.

Marybeth Hicks

Marybeth Hicks is the author of Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom (Regnery Publishers, 2011).