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Kentucky governor apologizes for linking child abuse to teacher protests

16 April 2018

Matt Bevin (R) issued a wordy apology on Sunday after he essentially said, two days earlier, that protesting teachers were partially responsible for the sexual abuse of children. "I apologize for those who have been hurt by the things that were said...it was not my intent".

At least 44 school districts across Kentucky closed on Friday after thousands of teachers called in sick to attend a rally at the state capital, NBC affiliate WAVE of Louisville reported.

On Sunday, Bevin said "I'm sorry", but buffered the apology with about four minutes of wordy passive voice.

In a video posted Sunday, Bevin apologized for the "unintended consequences" of his remarks.

"Many people have been confused or hurt or just misunderstand what it was that I was trying to communicate".

Throughout the entire legislative session, and during their recent push for the Kentucky legislature to override Governor Bevin's vetoes, Kentucky educators and the Kentucky Education Association have worked tirelessly to ensure their students have access to the resources they need to be successful. The Office of the Attorney General fights every day to protect our children and has arrested a record number of predators and human traffickers. "If we want to create a world without child abuse, we can not tolerate the governor's comments". However, officials from both Erlanger-Elsemere and Bellevue said Bevin's proposed education cuts - not the one-day absence of teachers - would "severely reduce" services that provide forms of childcare before and after school, including kindergarten, preschool and tutoring. "Governor Bevin is on the wrong side of history, and as his latest outburst shows, he's also on the wrong side of simple decency".

Bevin said he takes responsibility for not making his statement clear enough to understand.

- Senate Democratic Caucus " It's entirely inappropriate and perverse that the man sitting in the governorship would criticize Kentuckians who stood up today for teachers, public employees and our public education by insinuating that their presence in Frankfort today caused a child to be sexually assaulted", Kentucky Democratic Executive Director Mary Nishimuta said.

"The lecturers and public workers he has insulted over the previous 12 months deserve rather more than this". This rhetoric has crossed a line.

Kentucky governor apologizes for linking child abuse to teacher protests