Okay, okay, I know I shouldn’t fan the flames, but isn’t real life just full of nifty…oh, let’s say…occurrences that just have to be explored?
Recent news headlines are full of horrific stories on the riots in Greece, the fighting in Syria, and the tinder box we all call Pakistan. But what gets my attention, and I mean, really gets my attention, is Mr. Weiner’s story.
For those of you who may not know, Anthony Weiner is the Democratic U.S. Representative for New York’s 9th congressional district that recently got caught sexting (I had to look this up, it’s when you send sexually explicit texts or pictures via a cellphone). And now folks are coming out of the wood-work to announce that he’s been cross-dressing for decades.
What a winner of a wiener, huh? (Sorry, couldn’t help myself.)
I’m not trying to be funny here. Okay, maybe a little, but what strikes me about this whole debacle and others like it is this: why?
Why be a politician, if you know you have, lets say, habits that might not be perceived too well by the general public?
For the record, I have nothing against sexting, cross-dressing, or anything else done between consenting adults – more power to ya.
But, why get careless? Is there some unspoken rule that to become a great politician ya gotta have a sex scandal?
I mean, here we have a notable congressman. He has done a good job from what I’ve read and he’s been at this game for about twelve years, having held a public office since 1999. He’s had plenty of time to learn that a bit of nookie on the side (or whatever) probably isn’t the best idea. As a career politician, he knows his every move is scrutinized by the media. But he still did it. He still posted pictures of himself on his twitter account.
These faux pas happen quite a bit to politicians. For some weird psycho-reason, they think they are like the rest of us; able to dip into our vices when we please. Normal folks, like you and I, only have to worry about hurting our family and friends. But these guys! Well, I suppose they truly only hurt their family and friends too, but it’s all out there for folks (like me) to pick and prod at, then stand back and say, “See? At least I’m not like him! He’s dirty!”
Damn. Why would you want that to happen? What is it that makes these politicians tick? Do they like to dance with the media and their reputation? Is that part of the rush?
There’s no shortage of these guys. Look at what happened to Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Elliot Spitzer, Mark Sanford, Chip Pickering, Newt Gingrich, Antonio Villaraigosa, Kwame Kilpatrick, Jesse Jackson, Gavin Newsom, John Ensign, David Vitter, John Edwards, Gary Hart, and good old Bill Clinton. I’m sure there are more. But that’s what I got from an NBC news site (I would provide the link, but it’s full of ads).
The thing is, politicians reflect us, do they not? It’s not like you’ve ever heard of a politician doing something untoward that no one has absolutely never heard of. Just like the general population, they have secrets and habits that most of us are quite capable of keeping private. So, why can’t they keep their privates…private?
We all do things we know we shouldn’t. And since most folks genuinely want to trust each other, those of us who go off slinking into the corner to do our business, like to think we can get away with it. It’s the ‘can’t hurt you if you don’t know about it’ sort of thinking. But the reality is that we all dread the day when our spouse/partner/loved one will find out what we’ve done.
See that? We dread the day…
That means we know it will eventually come out. We all know it. Those politicians know it. Mr. Weiner must have known it.
There are no secrets; only stories waiting to be told.
So why do it? I think, one reason is they probably all thought they could get away with just about anything because of their position of power. Plus, don’t you think a part of them wants to get it out? I imagine they are so fed up with the bullshit they keep shoveling, they’re drowning in it and need to come up for a breath of air. Maybe they feel trapped in a relationship, either with their spouse or their constituents, and they just can’t think of a more dignified way to get out.
Something to ponder for today, along with this: