A heckler who confronted Sen. George Allen at a campaign appearance Tuesday was put in a chokehold and slammed to the floor by three of the Republican’s supporters in an incident captured on video.
My how terrible! Those nasty Republicans! But wait, there’s more…
Mike Stark, a liberal blogger and first-year University of Virginia law student, approached Allen at an event in Charlottesville, loudly asking, “Why did you spit at your first wife, George?” according to witnesses.
Wait a second. That’s not so much a question as harrassment.
Three men, all wearing blue Allen lapel stickers, immediately grabbed Stark, dragged him backward and slung him to the carpet outside a hotel meeting room, according to video captured by WVIR-TV in Charlottesville.
Given the harrassing, threatening nature he demonstrated, the response seems quite appropriate. In fact, Stark should be grateful those men showed some restraint. Other folks wouldn’t be so nice.
Stark said later in a telephone interview with The Associated Press: “I am a constituent. I am allowed to ask my U.S. senator questions.”
Yes you are, but in a proper setting, and in a respectful manner. You did neither. The story goes on a bit later…
In a Monday posting on “Calling All Wingnuts,” the blog Stark publishes, he hinted that he would attempt to provoke Allen before the TV cameras.
“Im also trying to ‘Roger and Me’ George Allen whenever I can,” Stark wrote, referring to director Michael Moore’s 1989 documentary in which he repeatedly tried to confront former General Motors’ chief executive Roger Smith about the company’s downsizing.
So, Stark wasn’t really interested in the answer to the question, he was trying to get a reaction. That, again, sounds like harrassment. In fact, it sounds like a premeditated attack. A repeated, premeditated attack.
In August, Stark similarly approached Allen after a speech at a hotel near Staunton, loudly asking if he had ever used a common six-letter epithet against blacks.
So let me get this straight. Stark planned, as he stated on his website, to “provoke a reaction.” Something he admits he has done in the past. This is not debate, this is stalking. Stark should have been arrested and charged.
Think about it.
If Stark were doing this to say, Brittney Spears or Jessica Simpson, what do you think the reaction of their bodyguards would have been? What about the police? Do you think he would have been arrested?
You bet he would’ve! Particularly after showing a repeated pattern of harrassment, and intent to continue.
Stalking is not a political exercise. It’s not free speech. It’s a crime.
If I were Allen, I would immediately file charges and get a restraining order against this stalker, and make sure he didn’t get anywhere near me. Who knows what this sicko is capable of?