at Gov. Rick Perry's inaugural ball.
Tsk-tsked for this by Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, Nugent backed off a bit. But his retreat from a term sounding like a combination of a chant at a Ku Klux Klan rally and a Nazi theory-of-race document doesn't even qualify as a nopology. Said Nugent:
"I do apologize—not necessarily to the President—but on behalf of much better men than myself," he said in an interview with conservative radio host Ben Ferguson, who's also a CNN political commentator. [...]Breaking news for you, Ted: "much better men than myself" describes about 99 percent of the males on the planet. Some people might be tempted to label you a Neanderthal, but we've learned in the past decade that it would be a smear to call those ancient cousins of ours Nugents.
"I apologize for using the term," he said. "I will try to elevate my vernacular to the level of those great men that I'm learning from in the world of politics."
Of course, Republican candidates like Abbott will brush off whatever slimy remarks you regale your audience with as long as you attract like-minded knuckle-draggers to political get-togethers now and the polls in November.
Some will say that Nugent is merely a sideshow and doesn't deserve the ink or pixels devoted to him. Certainly, he is a sideshow, a self-described, poop-in-the-pants freak. But while many people who engage in repeated violent hate-speech don't have the guts to turn their words into actions, they can influence others who cross over that line. Political candidates who don't unequivocably separate themselves from characters of his ilk can't plausibly argue that they don't condone their filthy spew and whatever it engenders.