By Savannah Marie
Former New York City mayoral candidate, Anthony Weiner spoke to GQ magazine recently and made a bold statement about what or whom he blames for his failed campaign. In short, it’s the internet’s fault.
Never mind the sexting scandal — Weiner is a repeat offender who thinks his discretions should be overlooked. If the internet had never been invented, he might have won the election based on his ideas for the city. This sounds a lot like he is passing the buck and not taking responsibility for his own actions. Are we buying this? Although, maybe he has a point. Maybe Weiner could have won election in the 1950’s.
In the 1950s or early 1960s, the press rarely made an effort to dig up dirt on politicians’ personal life and foibles. Let’s face it, just as the press paid attention to John F. Kennedy’s political deeds and not his transgressions, so too might the press have focused on Weiner’s campaign.
When John F. Kennedy was president, the country was in love with what was called “Camelot.” The Kennedy administration was helmed by this righteous family everyone loved and a president who gave the people comfort in knowing the country was safe in his hands. The radio and newspaper press were the only mediums for updates on current events. Television was just starting out and was limited by the fact that there were much fewer channels than we have today.
But what do we know about Kennedy now? We are pretty sure he had affairs with lots of other women — one of whom was the most beautiful actress in the world, Marilyn Monroe. We are also pretty sure that he had committed many legal improprieties while he was in office including his having connections to the mob. We also are pretty sure that he had a temper and just as it has been revealed in recent biographies that Joe DiMaggio had hit Monroe, we now know that Kennedy may have also hit some of the women he had been connected to. We wouldn’t even be surprised if it came out that he had a stint in a rehab facility.
But all of these accusations against Kennedy sound very much like gossip. And gossip only gets around if people are interested. No one was interested because no one would have even entertained the possibility that our leaders where human and had faults. What is different today is that we are greedy for those salacious bits of information that make celebrities human, and what’s more, flawed.
We have advanced communications technology now. We have the internet, email, text messaging, radio, satellite television and thousands of channels to dial up, and of course we have the tabloids, the most notorious purveyor of gossip. We also have the ability to write books and publish them faster. Maybe if Kennedy had been campaigning today for president, gossip about him in our media would have gotten around faster and the press might have taken a bit more interest in his transgressions. Maybe his alleged improprieties would have gotten him defeated in the primaries and he never would have been become president.
This is all speculation. Camelot may have stayed intact either way. However, Anthony Weiner has no one to blame but himself and his dubious sexting habits.
It is time for Weiner to take responsibility for his actions and stop placing blame. By the way, can anyone even remember any of Anthony Weiner’s ideas for the future of New York City? I can’t.