Friday, March 14, 2008

Stand By Your Man

I am not going to comment on Eliot Spitzer and his resignation from a political point of view. I mean really...a powerful politician involved in a sex scandal...it's so cliche that I'm sure it will soon be an episode of Law and Order.

What I will say is that I am tired of the wives having to stand stoically by their men as they publicly repent of their wrongdoing. Time after time, they quietly pose by the side of their betrayers, putting a brave face on a devastating situation. For once I'd like to see a politician have to face the music without further injuring their spouse by compelling them to attend a choreographed apology.

I am not against forgiveness if the wife chooses to stay and try to salvage the marriage with her husband, but for a man who has already put his self-interest before that of his family's, wouldn't the first step to repentance and reconciliation consist of protecting them by not bringing them to his confession?

4 comments:

VanceH said...

I agree. It irked me that he never mentioned his wife in his apologies--it was always his "family". Would it have killed him to apologize directly to her?

terri said...

Yes. It makes you wonder about how the relationships between politicians and their wives
function.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

This is because we believe that emotional support is one of the more important parts of marriage. To shame one's wife publicly is such theft from her personhood that we cannot imagine it could be worth it to anyone.

But it likely is a fair trade to her, or perhaps "expected risk" would be a better term. She not only married him (anyone can make a mistake) and enabled him (okay, two mistakes), but has done nothing to preserve her own dignity and that of her children. Not incidentally, she has done him no spiritual good by never calling him to account. Silda Spitzer, or any political wife, is not a powerless person. She could have brought him down a hundred times over the years but took the same risks he did: maybe he won't get caught and I'll get to keep being important.

I have contempt for Elliot for the precise reasons you give, terri, because it is a bad example for a husband to treat his wife that way. I'm not sure I feel any sympathy for Silda, however.

terri said...

I don't know enough about Silda Spitzer to comment one way or the other about her responsibility in the whole thing.

Is she in this marriage for political and career advancement?
Is she the victim of a particualrly deceptive husband?

Is it something in between?

Who knows what happens between spouses behind closed doors. Seldom are things what they seem to outsiders.