The Southington town councilor who speculated in public that President Barack Obama might be the anti-Christ has been suspended for two weeks from his post as the leader of the town's chamber of commerce.
The Meriden Record-Journal reported that the chamber wanted to make it clear that Democrat Art Secondo didn't reflect its views when he said that "we should check the back of [Obama's] head to see if he has 666 there."
In Revelations, 666 is considered the mark of the beast, something that the anti-Christ would possess.
Secondo apologized last week, the paper reported, and that's been enough for some.
Secondo told the Meriden paper that he voted for Obama and supports him. But, as the paper put it, "he got caught up in the moment and misspoke."
"It was very stupid on my part. If I could take it back, I would. I was really just talking about the econony," Secondo told the Record-Journal's Richie Rathsack.
State Rep. Zeke Zalaski, a Southington Democrat, said, "If he meant it as derogatory, I think he would admit it."
Let's ponder that for a second.
In the midst of a tirade about the economy, Secondo brings out of nowhere the possibility that the United States is being led by the most evil creature in history.
And Zalaski is saying that "if he meant it as derogatory" then Secondo would admit it.
How could anyone possibly wonder if Obama is the anti-Christ without meaning anything bad by it? Nobody thinks well of the anti-Christ, after all, except maybe his mom.
There's really no wayto put a happy face on that line and say as some of Secondo's friends indicate, that, well, Art was just being Art and we shouldn't take it seriously.
But labeling the president of the country as the Beast of Revelations, the penultimate evil figure in all history, is hardly a tiny slip. It's also not something that anyone could say by mistake.
I might accidentally call Secondo a Republican or spell a state senator's name wrong. But I'm not going to mistakenly say that the mayor is the anti-Christ. That doesn't just roll off the tongue without an awful lot behind it.
Secondo's vapid apology doesn't begin to explain how such a thing could come out of his mouth.
Take issue with Obama's policies, sure. Blast him for playing politics? That's fine. Say that he's ugly or stupid or mean and I guess that's within bounds, if not particularly helpful.
But to say we need to check to see if the elected leader of the United States bears the mark of the anti-Christ is way, way beyond the pale.
And I can't imagine why any thinking person would accept Secondo's paltry apology or put up with vapid defenses offered for him by his buddies.
For Secondo to say he was "really just talking about the economy" and somehow stumbled into questioning whether Obama carried the mark of the beast doesn't begin to explain what he said.
I could talk about the economy for a week and never wonder whether the president or anyone else was the anti-Christ.
Secondo really needs to explain how he could say such a thing. And then let the chips fall where they may.
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