Editor’s note: this post doesn’t address same-gender relationships or relationships with >2 committed parties. If you read it carefully, you’ll see that the messages I’m trying to convey can easily be translated to those.
Now, all that out-of-the-way, it’s time to address the big fat hypocritical elephant in the room: It’s not Hillary’s fault that Bill cheated on her, and it’s not Huma’s fault that Anthony lives up to his last name.
Let’s pick this apart bit by bit, since the vultures already came out to play.
A few years back, we all learned the incredibly smart, statesman-like, folksy Bill Clinton had a wandering eye and wandering hands. He slept with women other than his wife. He accepted special benefits from a White House intern that clearly weren’t part of the standard job description. In short: he cheated on Hillary. He accepted that publicly and was raked across many coals and an entire impeachment process over it. Hillary decided to stand by her man and stay married. Outwardly, she claimed it as her religious principles and her own mores that led her to believe their relationship and trust could be repaired. Cynics derided her as a fool and they claimed she was only doing that to patch up his political career so that he could follow through on quid pro quo support of her own political ambitions once he was out of the White House.
A few years after that, a New York politician running for Mayor named Anthony Weiner made national headlines by having rather private pictures of his private parts become embarrassingly public. Without shaking her head so hard it dislodged from her head, his wife Huma Abedin continued on and worked quietly behind the scenes to get her own relationship back on track. Weiner promised to be a better human, dropped out of the race, and we thought that was that until just a couple of days ago…when yet another picture of his briefs-clad bulge got sexted to some girl eagerly waiting to go public. Why was this a big deal yet again other than the fact that he was back at it? This time, their sleeping son was included in the photo–purely by accident, I’m sure–and now there’s a question as to whether Weiner should be allowed near his son. OH WAIT NO THAT’S NOT IT.
Nope, rather than everyone jumping on the fact that Weiner keeps losing his pants just as he’s about to text someone who has the New York Post on speed-dial, they’re all over Abedin’s inability to control her husband. She must have judgement issues. Oh, and worse still–she works on Clinton’s presidential campaign, so these folks are making the mental leap that obviously Weiner’s wiener has been able to get at classified material and other sensitive items that he shouldn’t be near.
While I can agree that Weiner and his wiener need to be out of the public spotlight for as long as possible–and perhaps all the major mobile carriers should revoke his access to a smartphone–it’s absolutely ludicrous that all of this is backing up on the ladies in question.
Did Bill Clinton cheat all those years ago? Yes. He admitted it.
Is it Hillary Clinton’s fault he cheated? Nope.
Did Anthony Weiner send images of his scantily clad package to women other than his wife? Yes. He admitted it.
Is it Huma Abedin’s fault he did this? Nope.
We are long since past the point where a woman should be held responsible for her man’s sexual satisfaction–and these transgressions from the monogamous relationships they supposedly committed to aren’t related to their wives. The wives in question could be having sex with their husbands multiple times in a day and it still may not be sufficient if A) the husband decides he wants more than that but fails to communicate that, or B) the husband decides he wants his wife AND another person’s attention, or C) the husband decides he just wants another person’s attention.
If we are to say that monogamy was the rule for these marriages, and that it’s a character flaw for these breaks to have occurred, let them back up on the people who actually caused them: Bill Clinton and Anthony Weiner.
It’s utterly ridiculous that the women who choose to keep their marriages together following a breach like this are at fault no matter what they do; it’s sexism and it gives the men a free pass that teaches our daughters they are ALWAYS in the wrong, that they are ALWAYS responsible, even when it’s clearly NOT their fault.
When the stones and arrows are being lobbed by someone who’s on wife #3 (when it’s well-known that the transition from wife #1 to wife #2 was caused by cheating on wife #1 with the woman who’d become wife #2), and the media is willing to eat that up with a spoon, it’s obvious that our ingrained misogyny still needs to be exorcised.
Huma shouldn’t have to take away Anthony’s phone in order to get him to stop sending dick pics, and anyone who says otherwise is admitting that men can’t control themselves. If that’s the case, then clearly a man doesn’t have the self-control to lead our country. Or, if men DO have self-control, then it’s Weiner’s fault and let’s all leave Huma and Hillary alone.
You can’t have it both ways, sexists. We won’t let you.