The political world recently learned about Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul's college secret society exploits, like when he "kidnapped" a woman, offered her pot, and made her worship a false idol. But the woman now insists, it wasn't a "kidnapping."
The Rand Paul campaign has been angrily shouting down this story, even threatening to sue GQ, which ran the Paul profile from which this delicious nugget of college hijinkery came. GQ is standing by its story — as it obviously should — and Rand Paul has been reduced to whining about how much easier it is to win libel suits in England, where they don't have that damnable United States Constitution protecting "rights."
The GQ article itself never used the word "kidnapping" to describe what Paul and his buddy did to this woman. But we and everyone else sure did! It's a silly way to interpret, "they knocked on my door, and then they blindfolded me, tied me up, and put me in their car," we guess.
Anyway, the woman at the center of this weird episode wanted to clear this whole "kidnapping" charge up. She tells the Washington Post:
The woman — who was made available to me for an interview by GQ reporter Jason Zengerle in response to the Paul campaign's denunciations of his article — said she didn't mean to imply that she was kidnapped "in a legal sense."
Well, no one meant kidnapping-kidnapping when labeling it a "kidnapping." Everyone understood that this was the dumb-college-kid version of kidnapping. Still: it's bold!
As for the rest of the night:
She reiterated that they took her to a room filled with pot smoke and told her to partake, but she emphasized that she hadn't been forced. "He did not drug me," she said. "He did not force me physically in any way."
She said they then "took me out to this creek and made me worship Aqua Buddha." And she added that the whole thing was so "weird" that afterwards she ended relations with Paul and his friends.
Okay so the rest of the story, after her clarification, is the same.
There are probably many angry amateur sleuths working to figure out her identity now, so it's understandable that she'd want to sweep it away. But did people really see this as something that could be fatally damaging to Rand Paul's campaign? It's just a weird story from college that happens to be funny. In fact, if Rand Paul just reacted, "Oh yeah, I was dumb in college, ha ha," instead of making legal threats against major magazines, we probably wouldn't be here two days later writing about it.