Sen. Jennifer Fielder, who’s now running for a seat on the Public Service Commission, wants you to overlook the fact that she spread false rumors about an imminent Antifa invasion of Missoula. After all, she says, there were other people pushing out those rumors on social media; she’s no more to blame than they are.
Every schoolkid knows that that lame excuse won’t fly: The fact that other people are misbehaving doesn’t mean you can misbehave along with them, and get off scot free. And that goes double for public officials, who should lead by example rather than follow the crowd.
Fielder also says, bizarrely, that she wasn’t spreading false rumors because the misinformation she purveyed wasn’t cut and pasted from some other Facebook post. Rather, she talked to people she knew personally and believed to be credible, and repeated what those people said. Since no Antifa invasion actually ever happened, relying on those sources was a big mistake, but that’s apparently the way Fielder normally informs herself about important public issues.
Maybe these days it’s just too much to hope for political leaders who will unite us at a time of crisis, rather than dividing us with unfounded allegations.
Sen. Dick Barrett, Missoula
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