FOX 31's Eli Stokols reports on another Colorado GOP proxy brouhaha:
It’s been more than a week since an incident at the Missouri State Fair involving a rodeo clown wearing a mask of President Obama drew claims of racism and reignited, however briefly, a national debate about race.
But on Wednesday morning, Colorado state Rep. Jerry Sonnenberg, R-Sterling, took to Twitter to weigh in on the issue, echoing the irritation of many conservatives who have groaned at the media’s hypersensitivity to what was, to them, just a joke…
The NAACP called the clown’s mocking of President Obama a “hate crime”; and the Missouri State Fair fired the clown and moved to require sensitivity training for future entertainers.
While some lawmakers, both Democrats and Republicans, quickly condemned the incident, a number of conservatives have defended the clown — Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Tex., actually invited the clown to come perform in Texas — chided citizens who can’t take a harmless joke and, like Sonnenberg, sought to remind people of a long history of clowns mocking presidents.
Rep. Rhonda Fields of Aurora doesn't agree with Rep. Jerry Sonnenberg's dismissive attitude, telling FOX 31, "That’s something they used to do at KKK rallies. It’s not something anyone needs to get over." The fact is, while lampooning political leaders is an age-old specialty of clowns, so is making racist stereotypes. You can't hold everyone responsible for generations of historical prejudice, but you can't really forget about it, either. If that makes certain types of "making fun" less cool, well, that's just the way it is.
Other than a misguided Greg Brophy-esque desire to glom onto controversy, though, we can't think of a good reason for Sonnenberg to wade into this landmine-strewn debate. But maybe that's all this is, in which case, nice job or something, Rep. Sonnenberg! Your new career as a low budget AM shock jock is waiting.