I think there has been too much attention and criticism of Representative Weiner.
New York Daily News
1) His activities have been consensual with adults. No one was forcing themselves upon a minor or ingenue with sex-texting or lewd behavior. Sydney Leathers as an adult from the Hossier state of Indiana was quite into it. She was not under his charge or control. I read their exchanges on Dirty.com and she gave as good as she got. This was protected speech under the First Amendment and I am very wary of condemning political or other figures for speech. We should expand speech and not constrain it: however objectionable.
2) For those who do not see marriage as a viable institution nor one that should regulate sexual behaviour, I am not overly concerned that Representative Weiner’s online solicitation was intended as private communication outside of the vigilance of his extraordinary spouse, Huma Abedin. For those who cry crockodile tears for his alleged philandering, she seems to have forgiven him and correctly noted this is a “private” matter. She should be left alone as well and to prosper as Hillary Clinton’s close advisor and confidante.
3) I find it ironic that Rachel Maddow in her fulminations would denounce Mr Weiner as a “liar” and one who “directly lied to me.” First of all, Mr Weiner helped build her show’s ratings during the Obamacare debate prior to its passage as law. He was on regularly and was a “star” performer. Also Ms Maddow, who projects herself as a progressive, should realise everyone, or a substantial number, tell sex lies. It is hardly shocking; maybe it is not admirable but I think a little understanding that folks who engage in questionable sexual behaviour are not eager to admit to it.
4) It should be at least mentioned that Representative Weiner who resigned from the Congress in 2011 and is a candidate for mayor of New York City did not have sexual relations, assignation, coitus or whatever word one wishes to use. As far as we know, he never met, kissed, fondled, touched anyone outside of his marriage. I recognise that digital communication, with apparently some phone calls, is not insubstantial, unlike President Bill Clinton who actually had sexual relations–other than coitus–with Monica Lewinsky. I think one should make a distinction between physical and non-physical relations in assessing behaviour. Not that the latter should be dismissed as insignificant but some contrast with physical contact appears sensible to me.
5) House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D) California has referred to Mr Weiner’s behaviour as “reprehensible” and “disrespectful toward women.” I strongly disagree. His behaviour was private with various women who engaged in identical and similar colloquy. Is Ms Leathers’s oral communication “disrespectful toward men?” Is her equally explicit communication as fully exposed-no pun intended- on Dirty.com acceptable to Ms Pelosi? Should only men and not women be held accountable for engaging in erotic communication? I aver “no.” I also do not like the fact that in a fit of anger or in search of a big payoff, Ms Leathers chose to sink the Weiner campaign, appear on Inside Edition and present herself as an abused, lovelorn woman.
6) If Mr Weiner wishes to run for mayor, that is his decision. The voters will decide whether to elect him or not. Calls for his leaving the race are obscene, hypocritical and bullying. I do not see him victimising anyone. I do not condone his behaviour but I will not condemn it. It is also rather insignificant compared to the state of the economy, NSA spying, drone wars and a pitiful dysfunctionality in our political system.
Nota bene: I support women’s rights, cringe at the word “freshmen” in higher education, support equal pay for equal work, and if you have to have marriage, then lesbians (and gays) should have the same access to it as straights: glad to see DOMA eviscerated. I advocate nationally funded day care, the right of womyn to choose their reproductive options with the preservation of Roe v Wade. Folks like Angela Davis, Emma Goldman, Susan B. Anthony, Kate Richards O’Hare, Carrie Chapman Catt, Jeannette Rankin, Helen Keller, Georgia O’Keeffe, Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth and Sylvia Plath transformed and impacted our world!! So that should tell you something about my views toward women in society.