I’ve been thinking about the rash of sexual allegations that has erupted against men in positions of power and public service. This is my take on it all.
In a lifetime, we all have many different roles to play: child, friend, student, parent, worker, spouse, player, etc. And one of those roles is our personal sexual stance. It usually occupies no more than a few hours a week of activity, with much more time spent thinking and fantasizing about it all.
Our sexual tastes are basic, primal, and largely beyond our control. And we play our sexual roles only during limited times when those primal desires well up in us.
Etymological and philosophical aside: The “x” at the end of the word “sex” literally depicts the connection, the crossing or juncture between two people. Sexual appetite drives the engine that populates the world. Many of us would not be here today had it not been for some weird sexual encounter that took place perhaps a thousand years ago. So unless we are speaking about forced unwanted sex, it’s really hard for me to be too critical of the myriads of various sexual encounters on planet earth.
Further, in most cases, just how we deal with our varied sexual dispositions does not have to impact the way we approach our daily jobs. For example, John Kennedy is generally thought to have been a great president, and yet it is well known that he had affairs. And yes, there are plenty of functioning people in politics, business and even military service who happen to be gay – and that does not correlate with their job performances. Sexual stance and job performance – simply put – do not correlate.
However, a damning line can be crossed. A hard line exists when one person uses superior strength to force unwanted sexual relations – or a position of power or drugs to induce sex that would not be wanted in a clear state of mind. Those transgressions should be treated as crimes because they are crimes. But crimes also have statutes of limitations – and for good reasons. And yes, 40 years is too late to indict for a non-murder crime. That is the law and it appears to be a good one.
Can a person who has a fetish for 15 year old girls at the age of 32 return to a job at age of 70 – and do it well? Honestly, that answer has to be yes. If we are talking about situations where the female had at least some complicity in the arrangement, unless there was forced sex ( which is rape and a crime for sure ) there’s just not a one-to-one relationship between whatever happened during fleeting private moments – and one’s ability to do a job well – the very next day.
So even though I find what Roy Moore did 40 years ago deplorable ( a proper use of that word at last ) if I were running against him I would not overplay that hand. After-all, I don’t think at the age 70 Roy Moore is a danger to teenagers.
I would much prefer that Doug Jones make his cases against Roy Moore on his record and the way he will do his job as a senator. I would advice Doug Jones to attack Roy Jones not for 40 year old sexual allegations – but for these reasons:
- Moore is a climate denier
- Moore does not respect gay people and their rights
- Moore has nationalistic, racist and tribal positions on immigration
- Moore wants to repeal the ACA
- Moore advocates for trickle-down
- Moore stands with Donald Trump
- Moore favors cutting funding for public schools and promoting charter schools, vouchers, tax credits, home schooling, and Christian schools
- Moore opposes abortion, same-sex marriage, and civil unions
- Moore wants to defund Planned Parenthood
There is plenty to campaign against there. And Doug Jones must also explain why he will be better for Alabamans.
I really think we should get a lot of these sexual allegations off the front pages of the our papers and broadcasts – and asap. They are largely distractions. There’s not much meat on those bones. They just involve fleeting personal relations and yes – weaknesses – but between two people. Gun rights, healthcare, tax fairness, clean air and water, Trump’s impulsiveness – these issues involve us all. That’s what governing is all about, right?
Let’s focus. These sexual stories are sucking up too way much oxygen and causing us to lose focus on the many larger, more important issues we must deal with … right now.
…………………….. Joseph Aronesty