Recent letters by supporters of Dave LaRock have unintentionally revealed why their candidate is so afraid of public debates. In one letter responding to an account of a disturbing tirade about “Sharia law” made by Mr. LaRock at a Back-to-School night, Kristen Kalina first tries to claim that the conversation was “made up,” then offers the sorry admission that it must have taken place in a previous year, “when people were more focused on terrorism.” Her argument seems to be that while it was acceptable to spout off such extreme and ignorant rhetoric back in 2012 or 2011, now that he’s decided to run for public office Mr. LaRock would keep such bigotry to himself – and therefore his intemperate words back then shouldn’t be brought up.
Likewise, Mr. LaRock made some notably hateful and ignorant remarks about Loudoun’s LGBT residents back in 2011 in his attack on another candidate. While it may be true that his extreme anti-gay views were more socially acceptable in 2011 than they are now – and thus are now more likely to harm his campaign – this fact does not excuse or make irrelevant his bigoted remarks. It’s clear that Mr. LaRock has no interest in representing all of his would-be constituents, and bland statements about how he’s (now) focused on “the economy and transportation” do nothing to change this.
Mr. LaRock appears to lack the strength of character to own up to his words: To say either “yes, I said that – and I now realize I was wrong,” or “yes, I said that – and I still believe it,” and let the chips fall where they may. That would at least be honest. Instead, he demands to be shielded from any questions that might undermine the slick “Etch-A-Sketch” version of himself he wishes to present now. The truth is that he has left a trail of extreme rhetoric and hotheaded lawless behavior (willful destruction of private property) that he cannot hide in an open forum not under his complete control. The real Dave LaRock can only appear before his like-minded friends, in private.