Wow, one of the most astonishing pieces of video to come out in a long time is the one of that Conservative supporter berating the reporters outside of an appearance by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
My goodness. You know the one. This older white guy lambastes reporters for unfairly obsessing about the Mike Duffy trial. Which, okay, is fine if he thinks that story is taking focus away from bigger stories – presumably more positive stories about the Harper government.
But what’s not acceptable is this man’s suggestions that Duffy be ignored because his transaction is “nothing.” Oh, sorry, that should be more accurately written as: “IT’S NOTHING! NOTHING!”
But then the guy just unleashes his intense inner frustration by attacking the reporters verbally. “You cheat on your taxes,” the guy says, obviously leaking inside information on the press corp that the party has acquired from, I guess, Revenue Canada?
He must be telling the truth about that because he seems so certain! How could he know about the reporters’ tax transgressions unless he’s been fed some inside information?
But then he completely loses it when the reporter asks, “Why would you say I cheat on my taxes?” by explaining – at top volume – that it’s because the reporter(s) are “lying pieces of sh**!” One person, presumably a reporter, is heard off-camera exclaiming, “Oh!” obviously shocked by this man’s total loss of decorum.
Now, this guy. You look at him, he looks like a clean cut, healthy man of early senior citizen age. Maybe he’s a retired businessman or I got the feeling he was (subjectively, strictly from his appearance, of course) maybe a moderately successful farmer.
I don’t know, it’s just the impression I got. He looks like a nice old man. He’s probably got healthy, successful adult-age children and lovely, adorable grandchildren. Life looks like it’s been good to this man. He is a white middle-class male, after all. At least, he appears to be.
What on earth would prompt him to lash out at reporters in front of television cameras with such vehemence, such vitriol? My goodness gracious.
I love the “handler” who sidles up to him and slips between him and the cameras and says something to him under the audio range of the microphones.
Our upset Conservative supporter, meekly acknowledges his instructions and starts to turn away but he just can’t resist one last shot and tells the gathered media who probably can’t believe the manna from heaven that has fallen into their laps: “Go stuff yourself,” he yells.
And you know “stuff” was probably not his first choice of word.
We never know what kind of personal stress people are under in their lives. This man has not been identified at the time of this writing. We know nothing about him.
I’m always willing to give people the benefit of the doubt. Maybe there’s a legitimate reason he acted this way. I kind of feel bad for him on one level because he has become a viral Internet sensation but, on the other hand, how absolutely clueless he must be to think that this was a good idea.
It was frankly, shocking. And because this is politics, we are left to decide what does this mean. Is it nothing? A blip on the Internet. This and Mike Duffy cheating on his taxes (which he pays from earnings gained from taxpayers, by the way – gives a whole new meaning to cheating and double-dipping).
Or is it reflective of the people behind a political party?
We have to be careful about drawing broad conclusions from the actions of this one man. You know he’s not the only person to actively take part in our nation’s politics. There are thousands of people working sincerely to build the kind of country they believe in.
Keep them in mind, not the actions of one jerk.