Washington State coach Mike Leach has always been described as having a quirky personality. On Sunday night, he put up for debate whether that is all it should be considered when he tweeted a fake video of former President Barack Obama.
Leach sent out a hoax video from a 2014 speech President Obama gave in Belgium. Immediately after tweeting the video, Leach's mentions were flooded by people telling Leach the video was a hoax with quotes from the president either chopped, altered or arranged out of context. Leach's reaction to those correcting him was basically, "Whoa, hey, I'm just putting the information out there."
Leach has since deleted the video tweet, but plenty of his replies to fellow tweeters questioning the post remain.
I have been at this for a while on a national level, yet no one has proven that. Also, imagine how me and others feel when false statements come out about us— Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) June 18, 2018
Really?!! You seem like a brilliant person. What exactly do you disagree with? If you’re right, I will change it. If you’re not I’m a victim. If I’m a victim than you should be punished. Which is it?— Mike Leach (@Coach_Leach) June 18, 2018
Leach eventually tweeted out the complete text of the speech on Monday morning, saying, "I agree that the video was incomplete. However, I believe discussion on how much or how little power that our [government] should have is important."
While Leach's latter point is correct -- open discussion is always a good thing, no matter the topic -- the best way to initiate such a discussion is not by presenting rumors or lies as facts. If Leach really wanted to have a discussion about how much power the government does have and should have, he could have tweeted, "Do you think the government has too much power?" Instead, he chose to tweet a hoax video in what he believes is some kind of good faith effort to prove a point.
I mean, that's like going four-wide with an empty backfield on 4th-and-goal from the 1.
Anyway, Washington State issued a statement about Leach's tweets on Monday, both the ones that still exist and the deleted one. Whether you agree that his tweet constitutes a "political view" is your own decision.
"As a private citizen, Mike Leach is entitled to his personal opinions. Coach Leach's political views do not necessarily reflect the views of Washington State University students, faculty and staff."