I can have some real compassion for Huckabee’s gaffe. I appreciate a politician willing to speak off the cuff. I was impressed, for example, when Huckabee was able to call on his southern roots, to remember growing up “in a very segregated South,” in order to speak against the tide in support of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, “Sometimes people do have a chip on their shoulder and resentment, and you have to just say, ‘I probably would, too.’”
Still, the bottom line is the joke was Huckabee playing to his NRA audience. Some are willing to give that audience a pass. Todd Beeton spots an “uncomfortable pause” and Steve Benen says, “The response was far more muted after the second sentence.”
I’m not so sure. The laughs seemed plenty hardy to me.
To the extent that Huckabee did make them uncomfortable it was most likely because he exposed a mindset that is both prevalent and utterly and completely repellent. This is not the first time, nor the worst time, that mindset has made itself known. Here’s Ted Nugent onstage last summer, while brandishing two machine guns:
I was in Chicago last week, I said, “Hey Obama, you might want to suck on one of these, you punk!” Obama, he’s a piece of sh*t and I told him to suck on my machine gun! Let’s hear it for them. I was in New York and I said, “Hey Hillary, you might want to ride one of these into the sunset, you worthless bitch. And since I’m in California, how about Barbara Boxer? She might want to suck on my machine gun! Hey, Dianne Feinstein, ride one of these, you worthless whore!”
Republicans are hoping to make political hay with the California gay marriage decision while John McCain is promising he’ll “nominate judges of a different kind, a different caliber, [and with] a different understanding of judicial authority” even as Democrats have had only 2 Supreme Court appointments in the last 40 years!
These issues — guns and courts — just don’t motivate Democratic voters. But, historically at least, they sure have motivated Republicans. Meanwhile we’ve got the appeasement flap. Right about this time you’ve just got to think that Democrats might be mad as hell. Do you think they’re going to take it any more?