Rep. Weiner Apologizes; Takes No Responsibility

Congressman Anthony Weiner of New York apologized Monday, June 6 for sending a lewd photo of himself to a 21-year-old college student from Washington State, Gennette Cordova, via Twitter.  The tweet, originally addressed to Cordova, appeared in Rep. Weiner’s Twitter stream and was visible to his 40,000 followers.  The photograph is a suggestive photo of him in gray underwear.  Six other women have been involved in the Weinergate Scandal that has been going on for the past three years.  This breaking story is an example of powerful, famous men taking advantage of new social networking medium.

The New York City mayor hopeful said, “To be clear, the picture is of me and I sent it…If you’re looking for a some deep explanation, I don’t have one, except that I’m sorry.”

Some may think that it is noble and courageous for the Democratic Representative to tell the truth, but, in fact, he really did not have a choice.  There was too much evidence against him.  He initially lied about it for over a week, claiming that someone hacked into his Twitter account.  However, after several online news sites rejected his refutations, followed by a bang of Andrew Breitbart’s website displaying a photo of shirtless Weiner, the NY Rep finally apologized.  Breitbart says that he has “X-rated” photos of Rep. Weiner, but unlike other news websites, will not release them for the sake of his family.  Congressman Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, plans to stay with him, and the Representative has no intention of resigning.

This is not a story I am particularly thrilled to write about, but it is necessary because it shows a lot about the hypocrisy in American politics.  Some may say that the NY Rep. is taking responsibility by apologizing, and that public humiliation already serves as a punishment.  Aside from his heartache of an emotional rollercoaster that he wears on his sleeve, can he simply apologize for public indecency?  Not according to our laws. It is extremely ironic that an elected official can be exempt from the rules, and “honored” for an apology.  If Anthony Weiner were in corporate America or worked for the federal government, he would be charged with sexual harassment and fired.  Or, if Mr. Weiner was a Dartmouth professor sending provocative texts to a student, the College would certainly take action immediately and not let him keep his position. What a double standard that some of our elected officials feel entitled to.

Also, this is not taking into account the generous retirement and health benefits members of Congress receive that is funded through the taxpayers and participants’ contributions.  In other words, we are paying for this. Mr. Weiner is just another example of an elected official embarrassing us all due to his immature actions.  He did not even get a slap on the wrist.  He should be ousted, and we should expect high moral standards from our elected officials.

Melanie Wilcox