Last Friday, teachers participated in a rally at the Kentucky state capitol to call for increased education funding, causing 30 Kentucky schools to be closed that day. In response to the school closures due to the teacher protests, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin said that he could “guarantee” that children were being sexually assaulted and poisoned because they were home alone instead of at school.
“I guarantee you somewhere in Kentucky today a child was sexually assaulted that was left at home because there was nobody there to watch them,” Bevin declared, in comments posted on Twitter by reporter Marcus Green. “I guarantee you somewhere today a child was physically harmed or ingested poison because they were home alone because a single parent didn’t have any money to take care of them. I’m offended by the idea that people so cavalierly and so flippantly disregarded what’s truly best for children.”
Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin on the teacher rallies today. “I guarantee you somewhere in Kentucky today a child was sexually assaulted that was left at home because there was nobody there to watch them.” pic.twitter.com/Q4PpzFsTt2
— Marcus Green (@MarcusGreenWDRB) April 13, 2018
Following widespread outrage over those remarks, Bevin has issued an apology, stating it wasn’t his intent to hurt anyone.
“The words that people say can have unintended consequences,” Bevin said in a video posted to his administration’s YouTube page. “I apologize for those who have been hurt by the things that were said…it was not my intent.”
At the same time, he didn’t fully back away from his suggestion that teachers attending protests led to sexual assaults, saying “thank you” to “those of you who understand what I was saying.” He added, “I know a tremendous amount of people didn’t fully appreciate what I was communicating.”
Watch Bevin’s apology above.
[image via screengrab]