Threats toward officials should not be tolerated

Ohioans are accustomed to rough-and-tumble politics — with a firm limit. Violence and threats of it are not allowed. Period.

Someone called state Rep. Emilia Sykes, D-Akron a few days ago, threatening her and her father, state Sen. Vernon Sykes, also D-Akron. Police have not released details on the threat.

Officials of both political parties condemned the action — of course. Clear condemnation of such behavior is necessary. Leaders have no need to use threats of violence, or to glorify it. In fact, they have a responsibility to act against it — no matter who is the target.

“It is wrong. It is reprehensible, and it is unconscionable to threaten someone with violence for doing the job they were elected to do,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “Simply put: hatred has no place in Ohio, and violence will not be tolerated.”

State Senate President Larry Obhof, R-Medina, and Minority Leader Kenny Yuko, D-Richmond Heights rightly put some responsibility on all of us: “We ask all Ohioans to join us in calling for civility and compassion, while condemning the hatred that seeks to divide us,” they said.

Police should make it a priority to find and arrest the perpetrator. Our philosophy of government rests on being able to solve our political differences peacefully.

Anyone attempting to change that is guilty of a crime against all Ohioans.


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