A Tennessee state senator is refusing to apologize for what many are calling a "tasteless" joke about pressure cookers in his blog in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing.
Republican State Sen. Stacey Campfield posted a photo of a pressure cooker with "Assault Pressure Cooker (APC)" printed below it.
The photo had labels and arrows pointing to all of the pot's "dangerous" features including a "muzzle break thingy that goes 'up'" and a "tactical pistol grip."
It's also described as "large-capacity, can cook for hours without reloading" and the color was "evil, black."
The blog post was titled, "Here comes Feinstein again," an apparent dig at Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.), one of the leading proponents in the battle for gun control. The image implied that pressure cookers might be her next target.
Two pressure cookers were turned into bombs in the Boston Marathon bombing that killed three people and wounded more than 260 people.
Campfield dismisses the criticism.
"I think it's tasteless when Obama will drag everybody he can up to Capitol Hill and try to pass gun control," Campfield told ABCNews.com today. "I think that was classless and tasteless. I don't hear them complaining about that too much."
"I was showing the hypocrisy of Diane Feinstein, the gun grabbers, of their inability to realize that it is a person that does activity, not an inanimate object, be it a gun or a pressure cooker," he said.
Campfield also posted a follow-up post on his blog titled, "Inappropriate? Me? Never!"
He wrote that he had gotten a call from the media inquiring about the blog being called "inappropriate."
"Really?" Campfield wrote. "If my post was inappropriate talking about 'crock pot control' then where is the outrage from the left when they push for gun control after the Sandy Hook shooting? Im [sic] sorry if I exposed your double standard....Well, not really."
Dozens of people commented on the pressure cooker post and its follow-up post, both condemning and supporting the senator.
"What kind of insensitive imbecile thinks it's okay to post a picture like this? Do you think it's a joke? Three people dead, one an eight year old child and you think it's something to laugh about?" one person wrote.
Another defended it by writing, "Nowhere in this post do I see anyone laughing over death. The post is about double standards."
"While obviously intended as a way to show how idiotic some Senators (mostly Democrats) are in trying to ban 'assault weapons'; this only comes across as insensitive and mean," yet another person wrote. "Perhaps a blog post talking about how idiotic it is would be in order, but this picture doesn't do it."
Campfield has not been the only lawmaker in trouble for seemingly insensitive comments.
During the manhunt for the bombing suspects on April 19 that put Boston on lockdown, Arkansas Republican State Rep. Nate Bell tweeted, "I wonder how many Boston liberals spent the night cowering in their homes wishing they had an AR-15 with a hi-capacity magazine? #2A."
Bell pulled the tweet and apologized after a barrage of criticism.
"I would like to apologize to the people of Boston & Massachusetts for the poor timing of my tweet earlier this morning," he posted on Facebook. "As a staunch and unwavering supporter of the individual right to self defense, I expressed my point of view without thinking of its effect on those still in time of crisis."
Bell said he regretted the "poor choice of timing."
Campfield is no stranger to criticism for his opinions. He was behind a failed bill that proposed reducing welfare assistance for kids with low grades in school and authored a controversial bill that would prohibit teachers from discussing any sexuality aside from heterosexuality up until the eighth grade.
- Stacey Campfield
- Diane Feinstein
- pressure cookers