FOX 31's Eli Stokols reports, while any Democrat with a sense of self-preservation cringes:
“It’s why we have call boxes, it’s why we have safe zones, it’s why we have the whistles,” [Rep. Joe] Salazar said on the House floor. “Because you just don’t know who you’re gonna be shooting at. And you don’t know if you feel like you’re gonna be raped, or if you feel like someone’s been following you around or if you feel like you’re in trouble when you may actually not be, [Pols emphasis] that you pop out that gun and you pop … pop around at somebody.”
On the floor, House Republican woman were quick to respond.
“I’m sorry, a whistle and a call box are not going to help that woman on campus,” said Rep. Polly Lawrence, R-Littleton, who also took issue with Salazar’s notion “that women don’t know when we’re going to be raped, that [women] can’t recognize when there’s an inherent danger?”
One of them, Rep. Lori Saine, R-Dacono, apologized to Salazar after he returned to the well and denying that he’d implied that women don’t know when they’re being raped…
Although the issue appeared to have been resolved on the House floor Friday evening, by yesterday afternoon, the clip of Rep. Joe Salazar saying "you don’t know if you feel like you’re gonna be raped" was on the front page of conservative blogs around the country–minus, of course, any of the dialogue that came after or Rep. Salazar's clarification. In a twist of irony, the story on the leading conservative blog RedState was penned by none other than St. Louis-based AM radio host Dana Loesch. Loesch, you might remember, was one of the foremost commentators defending Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin after his infamous "legitimate rape" comments.
To be honest, we're not sure what Loesch's motive here is, except maybe to purge her own conscience.
But with that said, GOP hypocrisy doesn't excuse what Rep. Salazar said on the House floor Friday. We would have thought so many previous examples would have imparted the lesson to everybody, but Joe Salazar is a rookie lawmaker, so we're going to be very nice and point this out one more time…
Never, ever, ever, ever go near the toxic subject of uncertainty and rape. Even if that's not "what you mean." Especially if you're a male, and you're not 100% sure that what you are about to say on this subject is inoffensive to women and wholly defensible, for God's sake, don't say it. Democrats may not want to hear it, but the fact is, what Rep. Salazar said can be interpreted in objectively very upsetting ways–and the blowback from Republicans, however hypocritical, was also fully predictable. It doesn't matter, or at best only matters a little, that Salazar, a civil rights attorney, is actually much more thoughtful and empathetic than these remarks make him appear. Like it or not, he most likely has more apologies in his immediate future.
The debate over gun safety legislation in the Colorado General Assembly has elevated the body's prominence. With that heightened prominence comes heightened responsibility–to do, and say, the right things. The eagerness of the national conservative megaphone to attack Rep. Salazar, regardless of the hypocrisy of doing so or public opinion on the underlying issue, should be a warning to Democrats to think, and think again, before they speak.
Because context won't ever be in the sound bite, and hypocrisy can be concealed by turning up the volume.