Comedian’s segment about arming preschoolers reaches Gov. Northam

WASHINGTON — Virginia Governor Ralph Northam made some eyebrow-raising comments on Wednesday’s Ask the Governor program.

After stating he opposed a policy of arming teachers, he added that he had even heard lawmakers “talking about arming Pre-K students — 3-year-olds, 4-year-olds — and I don’t know what these individuals are thinking.”

The talk of arming 3-year-olds was in part the work of comedian and provocateur Sacha Baron Cohen.

In a segment on his controversial new Showtime series “Who Is America?” Baron Cohen plays an Israeli anti-terrorism teacher and dupes several activists and lawmakers into supporting his plan for “Kinderguardians,” at times by having them read from a teleprompter.

Among those in the segment are Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., former Rep. Joe Walsh, R-Ill., and the twin gun rights activists Larry Pratt, of Gun Owners of America, and Philip Van Cleave, of the Virginia Citizens Defense League. They can be seen parroting prepared text that “first-graders make good first-grenaders” and aiming a gun at the screen while singing a twisted version of the nursery song, namely “Head, Shoulders, Not the Toes, Not the Toes.”

Baron Cohen’s show also made news after Rep. Jason Spencer, R-Ga., exposed his buttocks and yelled racial slurs on camera, causing him to resign.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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