I was disappointed last night when I heard that Anthony Weiner resigned, but, upon further reflection, if that is what he felt he needed to do, then so be it. What really pisses me off is the pressure he received from his colleges. I talked to my father this morning, and he wanted Weiner to resign as he thinks we should hold Democrats to a higher standard. When it first came out that Weiner had indeed sent out those photos, I thought he should resign. Then I reconsidered...
The first thing I considered is that this is his private life and it should be just that: private! Nothing illegal was done in this situation. When Republicans engage in such behavior, I call them out primarily because they campaign on "family values." This makes what they do hypocritical toward their voters. Weiner may be a hypocrite toward his own wife and family, but not to his voters.
He did, however, lie at first. I had to consider this. So I tried to put myself in his shoes as much as I could. I suspect that must be embarrassing as hell (figure of speach) to admit that you cheated on your wife. It would then reason that it could be challenging to admit said event. From there it would then reason that one might fail at that challenge, and that failure result in lying about it. So I get it. I can forgive Anthony Weiner for lying to the public.
Recently today, I had another light turn on. As I said, my father said he holds Democrats to a higher standard. This got me thinking today, "What standard? Whose standard?" (Or maybe the better question is, "Why is this part of your standard?") The answer to that came from the conversation I had with my father. I mentioned that humans are very sexual animals, but mostly we talked about bonobos, which are homo sapien's second closest living relative, right after the chimpanzee. (I don't even care if you don't believe in evolution if you instead believe that the creator/god/designer/whatever used a "common template." If that really is the case, then examining chimp and bonobo behavior is important to understanding humans.) I pointed out that bonobos engage in peculiar sexual behavior in that they have sex to resolve disputes as well as make-up sex. Sound familiar to any other species we know? Now, chimpanzees don't display these types of behaviors, but just like bonobos, they are promiscuous. Might humans display similar behaviors? I think the obvious answer is "YES!" Hell, the attention sex scandals get should be evidence enough that humans are very sex-focused. Furthermore, I think this idea that two people are supposed to spend their lives as being each others only sexual partner is not realistic for all humans.
Note the emphasis, because I can imagine some people are wondering if I'm trying to give myself a free pass on cheating on my wife. I'm not. I think people who know me well realize that is not part of my personality...which has likely been heavily influenced by these societal ideas of marriage. However, I'm not going to judge people who cannot live up to such a lifestyle as I realize that it is probably not in the human nature to do so. I put more blame on society for having such an expectation, and part of the problem here is...wait for it...religion! Now, this opens another can of worms that I don't want to deal with here, but the problem is that religion tends to control sex in order to control people. I will try to get a post up in the near future to explain how this works. For now, just look at Christian religions. You'll hopefully notice that the more fundamentalist denominations also have more restrictions on sex, while the more liberal denominations have fewer restrictions.
There are basically two points from this:
- Marriage may not have been right for Anthony Weiner, but did he get married to fit with societal norms? ...Norms which I don't think should exist. (Not to mention that he is a Jew who married a Muslim...maybe not a good recipe for a happy marriage...it would likely be challenging at the least...but I'm just speculating here.)
- Why is this even a standard we should be expecting politicians to live up to? (Unless they campaign on that standard.) This standard is a conservative/religious standard! Should I hold a Democrat up to a higher standard on this conservative value than a Republican? One word: No! ...Correction! Make that two words: FUCK NO!!! I WILL NOT play by THEIR rule book!
The second thing I considered is what I consider important. And, adding to the first consideration, what someone does in their private life is not one of them! With the way the Democrats have been nearly bending over backwards to avoid confrontation with Republicans, a Democrat who stands up for what he believes in is a huge plus! Weiner is such a Democrat. (Yes, yes, you could argue that he didn't stand up for his marriage, but then I've essentially addressed this already!) That's not to say I agreed with him on everything! His views toward Israel are a good example of where my views differ greatly with his.
Speaking of spineless Democrats, this brings me to my third consideration, which really is more of a reaction...whatever. The more I heard about Democrats asking Weiner to resign, the more I wanted him to stay. I can hardly stand this shit anymore! The Republicans keep blackmailing the Democrat politically, and they keep giving in!
The New Republic put out a good article today covering some of this.
Obama also opined that Weiner should resign because he can’t serve the public effectively—that was the same day he presided over a fundraiser in a half-empty Miami auditorium, while Republicans were successfully blackmailing the Democrats and the country over their vote for the debt ceiling. Obama is worried about Weiner being able to serve “when people are worrying about jobs, and their mortgages, and paying the bills,” but he has not raised a finger to defend Elizabeth Warren, his presumed appointee to head the still-born Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Obama’s statement was yet another example of what the late Spiro Agnew called “pusillanimous pussyfooting.” Weiner’s resignation means little, except to him and his family, but the willingness of leading Democrats to cave in the face of the campaign against him will embolden the Breitbarts and Eric Cantors of the world to up the ante.I could not have said it better myself, but this information about Obama out fundraising while not defending Elizabeth Warren and criticizing Weiner really makes me sick. The sad part is I am probably becoming conspiratorial about why Obama is not defending her, who I think is the obvious choice for the CFPB. Selecting her probably angered a number of lobbyists, to which he, or at least his staff, listens to. Now, Obama cannot revoke his nomination of Warren, as that would just be too obvious. But he doesn't necessarily have to defend her, though it does seem silly to nominate her and then not defend her. It is a shame I'll be practically forced to vote for him next election as the lesser of two evils. But I digress.
The last thing I want to post is a video that covers some of the same point that the TNR article did--Democrats caving in only further encourages the Republicans!