Megan McArdle, on GUESS WHO*?
Call me old-fashioned, but I think that social sanction can be very helpful in assisting us in doing important but difficult things. Marriage is stronger if people who find out that their friends are cheating don’t say, “Awesome, is he hot?” but “How could you do that to Jason?” Marriage is stronger if people who cheat are viewed with slight revulsion, and so are the (knowing) people who they cheat with. Marriage is stronger when people who decide not to care for seriously ill spouses are met with an incredulous “What the hell is wrong with you?”, not “Yeah, I couldn’t handle that either.” Of course it would be nicer if we didn’t need this sort of help. But we are a flawed species.
I’m not saying that we should spend weeks and months torturing the guy–that’s up to his wife, if she wants to. But I don’t think that the media should have hushed up something that was, um, very public . . . or that it’s somehow out of bounds to say that, unless she was really enthusiastically supporting his desire to text photos of his body parts all across our fair land, this was a really remarkably sh[*]tty thing to do to his wife.
Read, as Glenn Reynolds might say, the whole thing. Particularly the parts on marriage: as Megan rightly notes, if you’re going to get married and be a public figure, please be prepared to be judged on your ability to hold to the societal norms and morals associated with marriage. Unless, of course, you are prepared to admit (as per Zombie) that as a Democratic politician you have no morals at all…
Moe Lane (crosspost)
*Who I would like to stop being a news item.