Rational adults don’t make jokes about punching kids in the face because they hate their politics.
David Cearley

Rubbish. Absolute, 100% rubbish. Firstly, can we stop pretending that a 16-year-old is some kind of small child who can’t tolerate a joke or be subject of one? We charge 16-year-olds as adults in criminal court all the time. Some of them get waivers to get married; they are on the cusp of adulthood, and in virtually every culture would be considered adults. This kid was participating in CPAC and very much wanted to be considered an adult and treated as such. Yet here you are, for the purposes of a bad joke, essentially treating him (and for the sheer sake of bolstering a cheap political point) a young and innocent child. It’s baloney.

You’re also using this tweet, written years ago, as some sort of ad hoc justification for what Gianforte did. Talk about grasping at straws. It is wholly and entirely irrelevant for the purposes of this discussion.

Nor is bad behavior in the past something that negates future occurrences. You want to claim that Jacobs wasn’t a victim of assault because of a three-year-old tweet? Once again, I ask you, where is this party of personal responsibility? It’s gone. Devolved. One can see it very clearly in the response to what Gianforte did — responses like yours. Tortured, impertinent, irrelevant responses.

I would also note that the “punch in the face” joke concept has been around for a very long time and has never indicated an actual intent to punch someone; it is a proxy saying that someone is insufferable. In fact, the Germans even have a word for it: Backpfeifengesicht

This is what I find so duplicitous about what you’re doing here. You are on one hand making excuses for an actual assault, and on the other hand pretending (and believe me, it’s painfully obvious that you’re pretending) to be morally outraged at a bad joke. It’s transparent.