While many liberal media members spent the week defending Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.), PBS's Mark Shields may have made the best comment about this sordid affair on Friday's "Inside Washington."
Shortly after NPR's Nina Totenberg said we really shouldn't care about this scandal because "it's a great lark of a diversion," Shields asked the definitive question, "What the hell is a member of Congress, who wants to be mayor of New York, having portrait galleries of his crotch available for distribution?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
MARK SHIELDS, PBS: There are two great rules of scandals in Washington. The first is that it is never the act itself, it is always the cover-up. Rule two is everybody forgets rule one. And that’s exactly what’s happened with Anthony Weiner. I mean, he has been elusive. This is a man who, the most dangerous place in Washington is between Anthony Weiner and a camera and microphone.
SHIELDS: I man, he loves cameras, he loves attention, and he gets on there he can’t shut up and he can’t explain. He can’t say, "Is that picture of your crotch?" He can’t say, “No?” I mean, and what the hell is a member of Congress, who wants to be mayor of New York, having portrait galleries of his crotch available for distribution?
No matter how liberal one might be, you have to ask yourself that question.
We should hold our elected officials to some moral and ethical standards if we care at all about such things from ourselves, our children, and the society as a whole.
People like Totenberg and MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell might think this doesn't matter, but it has to if we want there to be some decency and morality in the culture.
This plummeted greatly after the Monica Lewinsky scandal aided and abetted by a media that saw the preservation of a president they loved as being more important than societal mores.
As a result, sexual activity has radically increased amongst our youth and at a steadily decreasing age.
The more the press brush off these sexual scandals as being unimportant, the lower we sink as a culture.
Fortunately, and for whatever the reason, there have been liberal press members like Shields that have taken a more conservative view of Weinergate.