Etheridge has apologized for his actions already. He told reporters on Monday, “The truth is, I had a long day, it was the end of the day, almost sunset,” he said. “But that’s not the issue. The issue is I apologize for my actions ... and I apologize to these young men as well.”
We’ll leave to others the debate as to whether Etheridge was set up by conservative activists. As he acknowledged, his behavior was over the line. It’s interesting, however, that the video makes a point of saying that Etheridge was coming from a fund-raiser hosted by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, a constant target of the GOP.
Apparently Etheridge did not pay attention to the whole Helen Thomas thing of last week. The longtime journalist and former UPI stalwart quit journalism after a website put up her questionable comments about Israel – including a statement that Jews should go home to Germany and other countries of their ancestors.
Perhaps he wasn’t paying attention in 2002, either, when then-Senate majority leader Trent Lott (R) of Mississippi made remarks that appeared sympathetic to the South’s segregated past at a 100th birthday party for Sen. Strom Thurmond. Senator Lott resigned his leadership post shortly thereafter.