Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A New Kind of "Defoliating"

Anyone remember the mid-term elections of 1994? Tom Foley (D) was ousted from congress, along with many other Democrats, in what Republicans touted as the "defoliation" of Washington. The news that has come out about Mark Foley (R) and his alleged relationship with a teenaged congressional page seems to be lacking one key element...outrage.

First, the Republican leadership....couHASTERTgh... knew about Foley and his predatory "issues" in 2001 ( Apparently, the Republican party is only really worried when the nemesis of the week is involved in some sort of scandal, and protects its own...regardless of the cost. If the person in question had the surname "Clinton," Republicans would have been crying foul 5 years ago.

Then there's the various gay groups, namely HRC, who have refused to comment on the scandal despite the usual inferences made by media outlets that homosexuality and pedophilia are inevitably linked ( HRC had endorsed Foley because of his voting record on gay equality and marriage issues. Groups like HRC have been working tirelessly against groups like Focus on the Family and the like to debunk the idea that all homosexuals either are pedophiles or have some predatory leanings. To me, the decision to keep quiet on this story casts some doubt on the organization's political credibility. I know, you're sitting there saying that I'm going off the deep end with this one, lol, but hear me out. Any political group, whether conservative, liberal or stuck-on-a-fence-post undecided has to be willing to take responsibility for the endorsements they give. By remaining quiet, the HRC is really no better than the Republican leadership.

Foley has resigned (hence the new defoliation I mentioned in my title), but I think this entire scandal has raised some interesting questions. 1) Will anyone involved with any political party or group ever learn the value in saying, 'oops, we screwed up?' 2) Will any political group learn to rise above party politics and stand for what's right instead of what's convenient?

The answers...Nope, and least, that's what it looks like now. I suppose that we'll all have to wait and see if anyone learns anything from this.

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