Former Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner (Picture: A frame from his official video)
Now that former Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner has announced his run for New York Mayor, it is a good time for shallow people like me to revisit what made him into a former Congressman in the first place. Let me reproduce below a short post I wrote about him on June 13, 2011.
“There is a simple rule of playwriting. If there is a gun hanging on the wall in a scene, it better have some rationale. It cannot just hang there for no reason. It has to have a purpose. I think the dick-flashing US Congressman Anthony Weiner violated that simple rule in the political theater that has just played out in America. Evidently, the gun was merely hanging there without a purpose.
People are baffled that he sent out explicit sexual images and messages to half a dozen women using Twitter, Facebook and email without ever trying to have sex with them. I suspect that part of the clamor by his fellow lawmakers to force him to resign is because he did not go the distance. How dare he just tease is the question.
If I have chosen not to comment on the feisty Democratic Congressman’s tawdry predicaments so far, it is because I see that as a non-issue as long as it is clearly established that he did not send those images to girls below the legal age of consent. His detractors have argued that if he can lie about such indulgences, one can never be sure what else he has been lying about. That’s a fair point and I do not have an effective counterpoint other than saying that one does not necessarily flow from the other.
I am sure Weiner would eventually sort out what seems to be an addiction for him, but my general response to this fake controversy is characteristically broader than just him. We live in times when the bulge in a man’s underwear could be a stick of RDX and not his barely concealed arousal. Aren’t we better off with men in whose underwear the bulge is what it should be and not something wired and triggered by an insane ideology? Just a thought. You might disagree.”
As you can see, I took a characteristically non-judgmental view of his indiscretion. Going by early indications Weiner’s candidacy is not all that absurd and he stands a fair chance. Until he was undone by his crotch cam, Weiner was perhaps the most assertive articulator of liberal-left views in Congress. In many ways Weiner is a cinematic character in that he has many of the attributes that writers of political movies have to contrive. The man has natural charisma that politics so requires.
Two years is a long time for a boner to last even if he had consumed the entire Viagra supply. Now that it has subsided politically, perhaps Weiner is ready to make a comeback. “I made some big mistakes and I know I let a lot of people down. But I’ve also learned some tough lessons,” he says in his campaign video.
"I’m running for mayor because I’ve been fighting for the middle class and those struggling to make it my entire life," he says. “I hope I get a second chance to work for you."
If there is one city that would give fallen politicians like Weiner a second chance, it has to be New York. His wife Huma Abedin, once a high profile aide to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has already given him a second chance. If it is resolved between them, the world should have zero problem with his salacious past.
That said, I must live up to my reputation for reflexive shallowness. In the campaign video Weiner speaks of his father Morton J. Weiner and how went to law school on the G.I. Bill and then “hung a shingle outside our house.” At that very instant, I told myself, “May be Anthony Weiner can say I went into politics and hung my dick outside my house.” In a manner of speaking, of course.