I just read Glenn Greenwald's piece on the Etheridge incident and unsurprisingly, I agree with him. This idea that politicians, regardless of party affiliation, are allowed to assault citizens who ask them questions is beyond the pale, no matter who the questioner is. It's a tough gig, I know, but they chose it and they have to be answerable to the people. Even if one of them is an Andrew Breitbart stooge (which this kid probably wasn't, btw.)
But it should be noted that this kind of thing is hardly unprecedented and it never gets prosecuted. Recall Mike Stark questioning George Allen?
And my favorite of all time is this one, which sickeningly became a national joke:
John Kerry didn't have to do the dirty work himself. The cops just manhandled and then tasered his inconvenient questioner on the ground. And we all laughed and laughed and laughed.
This Etheridge incident is disturbing. But it's just the latest in a long line of incidents in which people are physically assaulted for asking questions of politicians.
Wasn't it Ari Fleischer who said "watch what you say?" These guys mean it.
Update:Mike Stark reminds me that this isn't the only incident like this he was involved in. Click here to see Senator Cornyn try to slap Mike's camera out of his hands and grab it from him. As Mike points out, celebrities are arrested for doing this to papparazzi who are far more aggressive and relentless than Mike is. Why the double standard?