Dan Adamini, the Michigan Republican Party official whose social media posts calling for "another Kent State" spurred a firestorm, was right about one thing: "It was stupid, it was poorly done," he said of his posts on Twitter and Facebook.
Adamini, in an after-the-fact attempt at an apology, said his goal "was to stop the violence by protesters, not commit violence against protesters," but added, "I never should have tried to say that in 140 characters or in a Facebook post."
Kent State University President Beverly Warren couldn't have chosen a better word for Adamini's Tweet -- "One bullet stops a lot of thuggery." She called it "abhorrent."
The events of May 4, 1970, cost four young people their lives, resulted in the injury of nine others and profoundly altered both Kent State and the Kent community, which found themselves with a place in history that they never sought because of a series of events that no reasonable person could ever wish repeated.
We can't imagine how calling for "another Kent State" can be considered as a deterrent to violence.
We doubt that Adamini, who formerly chaired the Michigan GOP and is now state party treasurer, has ever set foot on the Kent campus. It's a good bet, too, that he has only a cursory grasp of what occurred there nearly a half-century ago. Otherwise, he would have understood how hurtful, insulting -- and, yes, abhorrent -- his trivialization of this tragedy is to those who continue to work to heal the wounds of May 4.
Kent State, in its response to Adamini's posts, stated that May 4 "was a watershed moment for the country and especially the Kent State family," a day that saw the loss of lives "that still pains the Kent State community today." It extended an invitation to him to tour the KSU campus and the May 4 Visitors Center to gain a perspective on the events of 1970 and their aftermath.
The May 4 Task Force, the student organization that has coordinated the campus observance of the 1970 tragedy for more than 40 years, has extended a similar invitation, urging Adamini to attend this year's commemoration program.
We hope that he considers coming to Kent this spring to see why it is so important that "another Kent State" never happens again. And why comments like his are the reason why May 4 -- even with the passing of nearly 50 years -- cannot be "forgotten."
Adamini, in response to the uproar he created, remarked, "We've got too much hate in the world. The hatred really has to stop. I'm sorry I played a role in the spawning of hatred."