I feel badly for Congressman Joe Wilson. Seriously. This is not a joke and I am not being sarcastic in the least.
It was obvious, in watching a short interview with him this morning that Mr. Wilson is very shaken up and obviously distressed at his outburst by saying, “You lie!,” during President Obama’s speech. It was a spontaneous outburst and an unfortunate outburst and, in so many ways and on so many levels, reflects the lack of courtesy we have for one another and, frankly, the lack of respect we have for the Office of the President, no matter who it happens to be.
In the midst of a week of swirling controversy, during a major speech on a controversial issue on which 1001 people have weighed in, and in the midst of rancor shared by people on every side of the debate, how can we be surprised that one person lost his cool at a bad moment.
Congressman Wilson was wrong to do so. People from both parties have said that from the start and he has apologized for his outburst. Here’s the thing. He is a frail human being caught up in human emotion like the rest of us. His outburst, to his dismay, was at a really bad and public time. Many of us have lost our cool and said dumb things in much safer and quieter settings them him. His outburst was both unfortunate and unlucky.
I hope that the health care debate, which I do believe is an important debate, does not hinge on his outburst. Actually, I hope that everyone learns that people’s tempers have blown out of proportion and that it is time for everyone to sit down, talk, and solve the problems like grownups. Often one person’s failure, even briefly, is a wake up call to everyone. But the debate should not hinge on one outburst----it just be taken for what it is. One man’s emotional mistake.
As for Congressman Joe Wilson. He has apologized in an appropriate manner. The White House accepted his apology in an appropriate manner. Everyone needs, from this point forward, to let the issue go and move on to more important concerns.
And finally, let’s stop piling hate on Congressman Joe Wilson. I doubt he slept last night and I strongly suspect he’s highly embarrassed. As a society, I’d say simply forgive him his ‘moment’ and allow him and everyone else to move on.