It’s okay to be upset in politics; it’s not okay to be violent. I hope we can all agree on that.
Back on Aug. 7, I met Tim Profitt, the Rand Paul campaign contributor and now ex-Bourbon County Coordinator who may for the rest of his life be better known as the Kentucky Stomper.
He was standing in the lobby of the Graves County High School in western Kentucky, where the GOP was hosting a Fancy Farm breakfast, and where I’d come as part of a profile I was writing on Rand Paul for Louisville Magazine.
Probably drawn by his Rand Paul for Senate t-shirt, I approached Profitt and started asking him general questions. He told me that with Paul "The true change is coming." I found out that he was the campaign’s Bourbon County Coordinator. I asked what the most important issues were to him in this election. He listed the economy, foreign policy, and Constitutional issues. "The fact that they've ignored the Constitution on the federal level so much really bothers me," he told me. And he said that he wanted to start reforming the local parties so primaries could produce a conservative Democrat and a conservative Republican, producing win-win general elections for conservatives.
In total, I probably talked to Profitt for less than 10 minutes. My overall impression of him was of a tough but approachable conservative, someone working hard and looking forward to victory. In other words, he seemed like a basically normal political person. He did not strike me as someone who would stomp on the shoulder/head/neck of a 23-year-old woman and then ask her to apologize.
But this is what happens when we coarsen our attitudes in a fever of rhetoric and dehumanize the other side. Profitt’s actions and lack of contrition for them are saddening, disturbin, and deeply unhealthy for our political process. And we should say so, on all sides of the political spectrum.
This anger is not okay; it’s stomping on our democracy.
Photo: John Nation