Bullying and the press

Jordan GarnIn case you missed it, the Salt Lake Tribune recently engaged in the tattle tell business–“reporting” on an anecdote between an educator and Senator Stephenson, where the former accused the latter of being a bully. It seems a Legislator’s manners when discussing policy are now newsworthy. 

I wonder how far this news nuance will go. I, for one, would love to see my encounter with Robert Gehrke go to print. I once gave him a blue salt water taffy and he ingested it without so much as a “thank you.” Or, that time when I invited Robert Kirby to speak at a dinner event and he had the nerve to show up with what appeared to be a furry rodent on his upper lip.  The public needs to know the audacity of Trib employees and Legislators alike. 
I do understand the educator’s concern. Things escalated to the point where Senator Stephenson’s face went red. There were children present and nobody bothered measuring off a ten-foot moat.  We can’t let the kids see how passionate adults are about kids’ education and well-being. 
I also know first-hand what it’s like to face the red-faced ire. I once discussed education policy with him. His face was red. I saw him speak to a bill that raised taxes. His face was red. I watched him eat a piece of toast. His face was red.  In fact, the shade of red didn’t dim at all even when he was cuddling a kitten. 
I determined right then and there Senator Stephenson had anger issues. During the course of organizing an intervention aimed at convincing Senator Stephenson to attend anger management, I discovered a startling fact–Senator Stephenson has a disease called rosacea, which causes his skin to go red. 
I felt terrible. Here I was judging him for his red face thinking it was the product of his anger when it was really a medical condition. 
At least I didn’t go to the press complaining about his red face. Seems like something a bully would do.