I had a feeling it would come to this.
The latest person to be caught up in the swirl of sexual misconduct charges is Texas Republican Congressman Joe Barton, who was my Congressman when he was first elected to represent the area of north central Texas in which I lived in 1985.
The problem is, he didn’t do a single solitary thing wrong.
A nude photo of the Congressman has surfaced. He apparently sent it to an adult woman with whom he was in a consensual relationship after he had separated from his wife. Why did the woman choose to make the photo public? Was she put up to it by Democrats eager to draw attention away from Senator Al Franken’s behavior? Possibly. The point is, Barton has violated no law, nor any standard of behavior, yet his name is lumped together with those of Cosby, Weinstein, Franken, Clinton and others to be named later.
The news media aren’t helping. How many women have accused Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexual misconduct? If you follow media reports, you probably will say five or six. The answer is one. One woman has accused him of forcing himself on her when she was 14. The other “accusers” say only that they dated Moore when they were teenagers and he was in his 30s. That’s not illegal and apparently, in the south is not seen as any big deal. That doesn’t excuse the alleged behavior with the 14 year old, but clearly, forcing one’s self on a young girl and dating one with the consent of her parents are not the same thing.
It’s ironic that all this is happening just after the death of Playboy founder Hugh Hefner. One of the things Hef spent a lot of his life railing against was our hypocrisy about sex. It’s never been on fuller display than it is right now.