Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The Foley Affair

I suppose it's inevitable that the more despicable and opportunistic operatives of the Religious Right have begun to spin the Mark Foley page scandal into a tale of a nefarious Washington gay cabal. And it's equally inevitable that Democrats are indulging in some Schadenfreude that a DC pants-around-ankles scandal is, for once, not involving a Democratic pair of ankles.

To me, the issue is pretty clear, and it's not really about sex. It's all about power -- the infamous droit du signeur; the presumption of people in power that their subordinates owe them sexual attention and favors. It's a dynamic as old as Potiphar's wife putting the moves on young Joseph, as new as the latest CNN headlines and as mundane as the lecherous boss on Main Street.

There will, sadly, always be persons corrupted by power. What disturbs me more are the enablers -- persons who seem to operate under the principle, "He may be a jerk, but he's our jerk." Well, Foley ain't my jerk. Shame on everyone involved in this mess who didn't do the right thing. And shame on the popular nudge-wink acceptance of power-over sexual harassment and coercion that goes on far from the high-powered halls of state.

5 comments:

Beth said...

Thanks for your reminder to a Shadenfreuding Democrat. I'll try reminding myself that not only was Foley a jerk, those pages were somebody's kids. God, please send your healing on them.

Questing Parson said...

And shame on us for creating an enviornment that does not insist on accountability through our inattention to the stewardship of the vote.

Lorna said...

it's always about power

Anonymous said...

That's one campaign slogan we won't hear this year, "turn over a new page"! Sorry, just tired of lousy ads that use figures to lie and liars to figure ways around telling the truth.
The old statement about absolute power seems to be even more true these days. Let's make up anything so we can start a war, seduce a child, make a profit....

*Christopher said...

LC,

Excellent, you get straight to the main problem in the matter--abuse and misuse of one's office and authority and power. What I don't want to hear is Dems now moralizing on the matter--they've had their share of excusing their own in the past.