White House spokesperson Josh Earnest delivered a statement on the Ray Rice situation today, clarifying that President Obama “believes that domestic violence is contemptible and unacceptable in a civilized society.” Earnest added, “Hitting a woman is not something a real man does, and that’s true whether or not an act of violence happens in the public eye, or, far too often, behind closed doors.”

Think Progress editor Judd Legum found the statement a little “off-key,” calling the “real man” formulation “pretty dated/sexist.”

Maybe it was just a consolation for the older folks.

Nah, that’s not it.

The only explanation: the president was aiming down to reach rubes who still believe in terms like “real man.”