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McAuliffe owes apology ... and explanation
By Mark Shepard as published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch

December 15, 2015

Editor, Times-Dispatch

If words mean anything, Gov. Terry McAuliffe owes Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr. an apology, and Virginians an honest explanation. If his comments are policy ideas they are completely counter to the responsibilities of the governor.

Recently, Falwell wisely addressed Liberty students about the very real threat of terrorism and encouraged them to arm themselves and be part of the solution. He started his comments with some reflections on the recent horrific attack in California by Muslim terrorists. Falwell’s complete remarks made it clear that he was referring to Muslim killers, not Muslims in general. And even if Falwell had not so carefully chosen his words, only the most disengaged of people would not understand that he was referring to cowardly terrorists who seek to slaughter the defenseless.

So when the governor stated, “Mr. Falwell’s rash and repugnant comments detract from making Virginia an open and welcoming commonwealth,” are not his words welcoming terrorists to Virginia? And is he not saying it is rash and repugnant to protect against these very real threats? Any other meaning requires twisting Falwell’s or the governor’s remarks.

Terrorism is far too serious to be used for political play. Doing so is not at all fitting for the person elected to the highest state office

© Mark Shepard

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