My World of Parkinsonian Delights

Man Apologizes for Hectoring Parky

Well, at least SOMEBODY regrets mocking a person with Parkinson’s disease…

The protester at an anti-health care reform rally who yelled and threw money at a pro-reform advocate with Parkinson’s disease has apologized for his “shameful” actions and blamed them on impulse.

“I snapped. I absolutely snapped and I can’t explain it any other way,” Chris Reichert told the Columbus Dispatch. “He’s got every right to do what he did and some may say I did too, but what I did was shameful.”

The man Reichert verbally abused, Robert A. Letcher, 60, is seen in the video sitting on the ground as Tea Party activists demonstrate in front of him. He is holding up a sign that reads, “Got Parkinson’s? I do and you might. Thanks for your help.”

Reichert, who initially denied that he was the man in the video, expressed his deep guilt about the confrontation and tried to amend his actions. “I made a donation (to a local Parkinson’s disease group) and that starts the healing process,” Reichert told the Dispatch. “That was my first time at any political rally and I’m never going to another one.”

Nice to see there is still some shame in the world for doing stupid things.

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2 responses

  1. When I read how Mr. Reichart understands his behavior at the rally, he still seems unreflective to me.
    “I snapped” is an assertion, not an explanation. As such, it resembles the unreflective and sarcastic statements he made at the rally. What’s more, by simply telling me that he “snapped” he fails to address what I was doing, (sitting there with a sign) which caused him to snap, and how his behaviors was part of the larger context of Tea Party people surrounding him.

    Mr. Reichart continues his non-reflective, one-sided assertions, when he says that he (alone?) can set the terms for “start[ing] the healing process”. At most, he might be able to “hope to start” such a process, particularly since he also asserted that this was his very first political rally. Shouldn’t the aggrieved have a say in what might start a ‘healing process?” Or even what might start negotiations toward reflecting what such a healing process might look like to both parties?

    While the two guys who accosted me are drawing all the attention, from my vantage it seemed that the whole crew of Tea-baggers around me had “just snapped.” The language around me was rough and sarcastic and both shrill and loud. Does Mr. Reichart feel any responsibility for for choosing his friends? You know what they used to say: “When in Berlin, do as the Berliners do.” It seems to me that what he did was merely emblematic of what everyone else on his side of the street was doing.

    I could wish that abdication responsible and courteous citizenship is not part of Mr. Reichert’s politics. But the whole episode left me with an impression that Tea Bagger politics is a politics of simplistic and hostile assertion.

    I’ll conclude with threee observations and an offer. First, I remain skeptical of Mr. Reichert’s sincerity regarding his change of heart toward—well… generally. One reason for my continuing skepticism is his apparent disinclination toward questions—not a single question appeared in the report of his sudden regret and change of heart. Yet, and second, I am totally sympathetic to his fears for his family—and I appeal to all sides to stop the violence and intimidation—both are inappropriate in a country bound by Laws, beginning with the Constitution, copies of which several people on Mr. Reichert adopted sides had appropriated for their own asserted purposes and shaken so menacingly across the divide that day. Third, I have no reason to back away from my original characterization of Mr. Reichert as being “cultivatedly angry”.

    Finally, my offer: under conditions acceptable to both Mr. Reichert and myself, I would agree to join Mr. Reichert in a plea for his family’s safety, in a Public Service Announcement.

    March 30, 2010 at 6:59 am

  2. Pingback: Parkinson's Patient who Faced Down Teabaggers Shares Thoughts | My Parkinson's Disease Diary

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