Former President Barack Obama schooled a heckler about being “polite and decent” at an Arizona campaign event Wednesday night, calmly asking the disruptive man to “set up his rally.”
The two-time president took to the stage in Phoenix to extend his support to Democrat Senator Mark Kelly and Secretary of State Katie Hobbs ahead of next week’s midterm election.
In two closely watched races, Kelly is fighting to hold on to her Senate seat against Republican nominee Blake Masters, while Hobbs is taking on Donald Trump-backed Kari Lake in the gubernatorial race.
During Wednesday’s rally, Mr Obama was telling the crowd that Republicans “want an economy that is great for the people at the top, but not always so good for the common people” when he was stopped by a man shouting Gone.
“Like you, Obama!” Heckler shouted.
The former president looked at the offender and initially tried to continue his speech, while the man continued to make a ruckus.
Mr. Obama kept calm, just stopped and asked: “Will you start yelling?”
The crowd jumped at Heckler, while Obama smiled and calmly raised his hand in the air: “Don’t start yelling. come on. Why do you start screaming?”
As the man continued to shout and the crowd grew louder, Mr. Obama urged everyone present to remain calm.
“Wait, everyone,” he said. “Don’t be distracted. Booty.”
Turning to Heckler, he gave him a lesson in how civil human discourse works.
“Hey, young man, just listen for a second,” she told him.
“You have to be polite and courteous when people are talking, when other people are talking and then you have a chance to talk.”
Mr. Obama reminded him of the hard work that people put into organizing the rally.
“Set up your own rally!” They said.
“A lot of people worked hard for this. Come.”
Heckler was pulled out of the crowd to continue the rally.
The former president used the harsh interruption as an example of the state of American politics, where he says people “distract” from what is happening.
“Please listen for a second. This is what is happening in our politics these days. We get distracted. You see one person shouting and everyone is shouting,” he said.
“You get a tweet that is stupid and suddenly everyone is obsessed with the tweet. We can’t fall for it. We have to stay focused.”
Mr. Obama’s calm response comes as he has faced other hecklers circling the midterm circuit last week.
On Saturday, during a campaign rally in Detroit, Michigan, Mr Obama urged elected officials to “categorically reject” the dangerous rhetoric in the wake of the violent hammer attack on Paul Pelosi.
A heckler who shouted from the crowd stopped him when he made the remark.
Mr. Obama bluntly told the man: “Sir, that’s what I mean… there is a process that we have established in our democracy.
“Right now, I’m talking. You’ll have a chance to talk soon.”
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /