Monday, August 11, 2008

On the John Edwards Scandal

Seeing so many "concern trolls" coming out of the woodwork and sending personal messages to me about the political fallout from the John Edwards affair, you would've thought I was the one who had the affair....or that I'd known about it all along.

I was a strong supporter of Senator Edwards for our common stand on the many issues that were (and are) most important to me. The mistake some of you have made in suggesting that "you told me so" and that I was a "poor judge of character" is that you still don't understand why I supported Edwards in the first place. Perhaps you don't understand where I'm coming from because the media never gave him a fair shake. They wanted to talk about his perfect, unlined face and his big house. They're still digging in with their claws. Pathetic pieces of work, some of them are.

The cult of personality that the Presidential race has become in this nation is at a fever pitch. As in the days of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the media has its collective shorts in a faux-moral uproar over a candidate having a marital affair.

Yes - I understand that, politically, Senator Edwards focused much of his Presidential platform on the moral failings of the past eight years, and so it's easy for some who see his mistake as a key moral personal failing to throw away the proverbial baby (who was a very bad baby) with the bathwater of his down-to-earth vision. It's all too easy to cast away the body of ideas he's been sharing with progressives but for the man's human weakness.

I worked directly with him and Elizabeth on some issues and I can tell you that I've never seen two more committed and politically courageous people. If Mrs.Edwards can find forgiveness, and I assume she did along time ago, then it would only be a sick preoccupation with sex that would cause me to turn away from soliciting their future support on the issues that make a real difference in our lives. I'm just not that hung up on others' personal affairs. I'll leave that to some of you cult-of-celebrity subscribers. To you, I say never fear...your gossip shows will be on once again tonight. You can get another fix in a few hours.

His affair, for me personally, has no bearing on the fact that what he was saying was true all along.

I feel tremendously sorry for the Edwards family right now.

But for those who are coming to me looking for me to step back from my positions because Senator Edwards made a tragic mistake which even the most suspicious of his detractors couldn't have known about or imagined, I think you'd best stop feeling so "sorry" for me and move along. There's nothing for you to see here except my constant positions on the issues that matter to all of us.

The primary ended when Senator Obama became the presumptive nominee. That was quite a while ago. If any of you care to keep Senator Obama apprised of our hopes that he'll get(and stay) on a Progressive path, do something productive rather than accost me....go to The Nation magazine and sign this letter.

Senator Edwards will hopefully be back to help out with the Half in Ten cause,and when he does, I'd encourage those who judged him based on the standards of the cult of personality rather than the trust that he meant what he said all along about ending poverty to join Half in Ten.

I want to share some of my very few comments at Daily Kos on the topic:

Rec'd curious personal notes from concern trolls (4+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
sockpuppet, Noisy Democrat, Triscula, carllaw

Amazing how they come out of the woodwork when something like this if any of us knew about the politically (and personally) tragic mistake made by Edwards. I take it with a grain of salt because, from a political standpoint, I moved on from the primary a long time ago and still hold to my belief in the social justice that Edwards strongly championed. He may not be able to carry the fight on strongly because of his glaringly poor judgment in his personal affairs and America's preoccupation with sex, but I sure as hell will be fighting myself. And I'd stand beside him in that fight any day..unashamed.

Very well-said, Don, I join your Half In Ten support (5+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
sockpuppet, TomP, planetclaire4, DixieDishrag, carllaw

It would be my deepest disappointment were Half in Ten to suffer.

John Edwards is a human being with human failings.

One lesson to be learned is that no one - regardless of who the candidate is - should be a true believer in a personality. No one should place a human being on a super-human pedestal. And no one should present themselves as a savior of any kind.

I saw many true believers flocking to Daily Kos during this primary season for another personality..Mr. Obama. Let's remember that he, too, is flesh and blood.

We must be cautious and remember it's the cause and not the figurehead in which we should place our undying faith.

My own true belief was in the causes that John and Elizabeth championed.

Thankfully, I have no regret in having been a constant and committed champion of those causes and will recognize and pay tribute to the viable candidates who champion them in the future.

As for Senator Edwards, I am disappointed, but at the same time I still believe that he was just as committed to ending poverty as you and I have been. I still am inextricably enjoined with him, in a social-justice sense, in that cause, regardless of his unbelievably bad judgment in his personal and political affairs. Social justice is a moral cause...and it's far more important to concentrate upon than the kind of hyperfocused and holier-than-thou moral judgment being passed on Edwards now.

Those who choose to blurt out their "fuck you-s" and "I hate you-s" are having knee-jerk reactions in their visions of what could have been and, thankfully, will never come to pass. Edwards could've been the POTUS nominee and have blown it for all of us. Understandable.

Those who excoriate the people who supported Edwards because of his causes are wrong in failing to see that they're only seeing through their own filters...many having shown that they, themselves, have been true believers in another candidate while almost robotically sinking their teeth into the political flesh of Hillary Clinton for so many months.

Many lessons to be learned here.....

My support for Half in Ten remains strong.

I hope others will join you, Don.

great comment! (3+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
sockpuppet, TomP, planetclaire4

the best comment I've read, and I think I've read a great deal, as someone who journeyed far and wide with the Edwards family..

by laurenc on Sun Aug 10, 2008 at 11:53:12 AM PDT

[ Parent | Reply to This | Recommend ]

Thank you, laurenc (0+ / 0-)

I've worked hard for John and Elizabeth myself on many issues that concerned all of us. It's a real heartbreak to see all of this happening..for them...for us...but it doesn't mean that our causes must suffer or that Senator Edwards' personal and political mistake is by any means a reflection on those who believed in those causes alongside the Edwardses. Take heart and know that I, for one, and many others here support everything you did for the Edwardses because you believed in doing the right thing....even if it turns out that decisions with politically tragic consequences were consciously made by the candidate himself. John always told us that his run was about us...and now it's up to us to bethe leaders he wanted us to carry on and hope the healing will take place in the Edwards family and that they'll both be back to fight..healthy and healed.. asconcerned citizens by our side.

At Facebook: Harry Taylor for Congress 2008


benny06 said...

JRE and EE's vision for taking back our country drew me to them in 2004. I never lost sight of it, and won't.

Right on-- with your post.

Jude Nagurney Camwell said...

Benny, I'll be right by your side as the election of 2008 has become a memory and our feet have resisted becoming planted in the mud of the past. The present may now be painful for some of us, as life and people sometimes throw us in unexpected directions, but if there's one important thing I've learned and from which I've received great inspiration and benefit, it's the value of friendships developed with the committed people I've met on the path toward our common vision.