On MSNBC Live last night, MSNBC General Manager Dan Abrams, Tucker Carlson, and Joe Scarborough discussed the Larry Craig story. As the other anchors laugh, Carlson recounts how he once returned with a friend to a public men’s room where a man had “bothered” him and proceeded to assault the guy.
Transcript via Media Matters.
CARLSON: I have. I’ve been bothered in Georgetown Park. When I was in high school.
ABRAMS: Tucker, what did you do, by the way? What did you do when he did that? We got to know.
CARLSON: I went back with someone I knew and grabbed the guy by the — you know, and grabbed him, and — and —
ABRAMS: And did what?
CARLSON: Hit him against the stall with his head, actually!
CARLSON: And then the cops came and arrested him. But let me say that I’m the least anti-gay right-winger you’ll ever meet —
CARLSON: — but I do think doing this in men’s rooms appears to be common. It’s totally wrong, and they should knock it off. I mean that. I think it’s — I can’t bring my son to the men’s room at the park where he plays soccer because of all these creepy guys hanging around in there. I actually think it’s a problem. I’m sorry.
Daily KOS is calling on MSNBC to fire Carlson, and for Abrams to acknowledge the incident and apologize for giving the impression that premeditated violence is not only appropriate but amusing.
Tucker Carlson sent a statement to Media Matters this afternoon through an MSNBC spokeswoman, revising the story:
“Let me be clear about an incident I referred to on MSNBC last night: In the mid-1980s, while I was a high school student, a man physically grabbed me in a men’s room in Washington, DC. I yelled, pulled away from him and ran out of the room. Twenty-five minutes later, a friend of mine and I returned to the men’s room. The man was still there, presumably waiting to do to someone else what he had done to me. My friend and I seized the man and held him until a security guard arrived. Several bloggers have characterized this is a sort of gay bashing. That’s absurd, and an insult to anybody who has fought back against an unsolicited sexual attack. I wasn’t angry with the man because he was gay. I was angry because he assaulted me.”
A pretty drastic change in the story, don’t you think? But I guess this version may not have garnered the hearty laugh that it got from the other anchors.