2017 Man of the Year: Rep. Duncan Hunter Jr.

There are any number of ways to spot a liberal. In the wild they are said to adorn themselves with exotic head coverings. They sometimes consume entire meals without meat courses. They have even been known to flee from the gaze of patriots with the assistance of late 19th-century German industrial machinery. But the surest way to arrive at a precise identification—on a taxonomic scale ranging from the stalwart Cold War liberalism of a John F. Kennedy or a Henry Jackson to the exercise-obsessed, baby-hating, flag-disrespecting, ISIS-sympathizing Communist weenieism of your average New York Times subscriber—is to ask them what they think of the police.

Consider Rep. William Lacy Clay (D., Mo.). For reasons that must remain mysterious to those of us with developed taste who are also grateful not to be subject to the mutable courtesy and deceitful clemency of wandering bands of brigands, this public servant dishonored cops everywhere by displaying a picture that depicted honorable peace officers as horned lupine beasts who shoot and even crucify law-abiding Americans inside grim brick-walled torture chambers as a kind of blood sport.

Nothing, of course, could be further from the truth. Every time you don't get your head sniped off by a jihadist or robbed of your hard-earned valuables while walking down the gleaming avenues of our fair metropolises, it is because a uniformed man or a woman most likely from a lower-class background was busy performing difficult and thankless tasks that resulted in your safety. It may not take a village to raise a child, but it certainly takes a nation of hard-working cops to keep loafers, sneaks, hoods, rapscallions, blackguards, scofflaws, sneak-thieves, cutpurses, burglars, murderers, terrorists, anarchists, and socialists at bay.

Which is why Rep. Duncan Hunter (R., Calif.), a Marine and aficionado of harmless electronic nicotine delivery systems, took it upon himself to confiscate the image in question.

Not since Walker delivered his first palm-heel strike to the repulsive visage of a nameless petty criminal as Allan Bloom's The Closing of the American Mind was hanging on near the bottom of the paperback bestseller list has this country seen a culture warrior of Hunter's decency and grit. Who knows what horrors he braved in the murkiest depths of the tunnel—the Swamp-within-the-Swamp that awaits industrial-scale drainage at the hands of President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans—in which the offensive and poorly realized picture hung? Armed with only a screwdriver, he faced untold evils and cast aside the doubt that must plague the heart of even the most steadfast paladin and tore the damn thing down.

Nor was he content merely to cast aside this repulsive sketch or even to deface it eagerly in the privacy of his own quarters. Instead, Hunter, presumably without even the aid of gloves, carried the failed exercise in anti-cop iconography all the way back to the offices of Rep. Lacy, who had previously refused to countenance its removal.

For his stolid display of solidarity with our boys in blue and his commitment to aesthetic standards, we proudly elevate Rep. Duncan Hunter to the rank of a 2017 Washington Free Beacon Man of the Year.