Page Scandal Absurd
The media's recent obsession with former Rep. Mark Foley's sexually suggestive e-mails and instant messages to Congressional pages (all male teens) and their speculation about how the scandal may tilt the November elections, and possibly even cost House Speaker Dennis Hastert his leadership post, reveal appalling cynicism and hypocrisy. To hear some tell it, Foley is no better than a child molester. Give me a break. It appears Foley never actually acted out any of his fantasies. And while many relish the chance to refer to the pages as children, that is misleading. The pages are young, of course -- about the age at which the majority of Americans actually become sexually active. That's not to endorse teen sex or adult flirtations with teens, but Foley's electronic flirtations were not quite the acts of sexual perversion some now make them out to be.
One wonders what kinds of kinky things former President Bill Clinton might have said to the various women he bedded while married, how he might have used his position as governor of Arkansas or president to pressure subordinates into actual fornication. I expect he, like everyone else hot with sexual desire, said some pretty edgy stuff as hands, mouths and genitalia went to work. Who cares? Lots of Republicans made political hay of it. I've always thought it was a circus. And Dems who always agreed with me are now falling all over themselves to make Foley out to be some sort of pedophile. Worse, the idea that Hastert should lose his post because he never outted Foley is raw opportunism. I suspect we've all been privy to people's foibles, but tried to address them without making show trials out of them. Likely Hastert believed attention from the leadership would be enough to convince Foley to stop his flirtations. In any case, the left and their media henchmen now expect us to punish Hastert and the entire GOP for not having publicly crucified the gay flirt from Florida. Hypocrites!