By Alexis Garrett Stodghill
Rep. Anthony Weiner has announced plans to leave office sources revealed by Reuters say, making him ” the third member of the U.S. Congress to step down this year because of a sex scandal.” This decision comes weeks after concurrent debates in political arenas and the public sphere about whether Weiner’s oversharing of body parts over social media are grounds for resignation. Or was it the lying?
The world may never decide which was worse. Now we won’t have the chance to draw conclusions, as the beleaguered politician is holding a press conference today at 2 pm — most likely to announce leaving his post.
UPDATE: Weiner Resigns
Over the last few days, mounting evidence of Weiner’s kinky streak has escalated to the point that Democratic leadership has lost all tolerance for this spectacle. Recently, naked pictures of Anthony Weiner taken in the House gym circulated extensively. Then, former Adult Videos star Ginger Lee announced for a second time that Weiner asked her to lie about their chats — adding that his dirty talk was actually one-sided harassment. Now the National Enquirer has dug up pictures of the representative wearing women’s undergarments. Although they were taken in college, in today’s context these images further solidify the impression that Weiner lacks judgement and maturity. These revelations underscore the Dems’ blaring cries for Weiner to go.
Anothony Weiner has decided to listen. Even though he retains the support of his constituents, Weiner is caving in, and will take his sexting self to hopefully more permissive shores. But many don’t see the problem. Forbes.com is not alone in frowning on the forced removal of a politician who did nothing illegal. Others cite the fact that there are numerous Republicans who have committed actual crimes still in office. Why should Weiner be held to a harsh standard?
This is where Democrats want to distinguish themselves from Republicans. Republicans are coming to be defined by a hypocritical application of justice, mixed with the illogical promotion of absurd ideas, all out of allegiance to the party. Whether it is tolerating Tea Party gibberish, or defending married leaders who sleep around, the GOP will likely break down under this lack of integrity. Republicans stand for nothing but getting and keeping political power, pointing to a lack of any edifying moral center. Eventually, the public must recognize this. As their “anything goes as long as we get votes” policy makes itself plain, Democrats will appear more capable of guiding the nation based on unselfish principles. One of those principles is honesty, a quality Weiner sorely lacks.
Morality and integrity are not merely words to be wielded in a traditional religious sense. Having some sense of right and wrong, and caring about how your actions impact the larger social order, are the basis for which all activities should be judged — especially those of a politician. Democrats want to maintain their sense of integrity as a central part of how they run their party. This will show that they can express higher ideals with a concern for the public’s greater good. The lack of integrity exhibited by Republicans means quite plainly: if they can do anything to get votes, and support any member no matter what they do, they cannot be trusted to do right by the public they are representing. In no way should Democrats follow this example.
Supporting Weiner just because the Republicans always support their people no matter what negates the possibility of developing public trust. It would put Dems on the same level of the GOP. Morally, politically and socially, this is not the right thing to do. Getting rid of Weiner is.