Now that Anthony Weiner has admitted to the tweeted shlong, the U.S. congressman’s name has been added to the Hall of Shame for politically powerful men who’ve recently cheated, in some form or fashion, on their wives.
People ask over and over: “Why do men do this?” Let me suggest a simple explanation that’s usually overlooked: Lifelong monogamy isn’t for everyone. In fact, it’s an unreasonable expectation for many, many people. Some say that monogamy is unnatural, but you don’t have to be a “free love” hippie to acknowledge the obvious: “Happily ever after” just doesn’t cut it for a lot of men and women, so let’s stop promoting marriage as the ideal for everyone, including our political leaders.
“So don’t get married!” the promoters of monogamy declare. But it’s not so simple, especially for politicians. The pressure on people who run for high office to maintain a façade of idyllic family stability is enormous and ridiculous. Indeed, it’s a given that neither a bachelor nor a bachelorette could be elected U.S. president. That bars an awful lot of otherwise qualified people.
All I’m sayin’ is – let’s stop acting surprised and shocked when public figures stray from socially enforced arrangements that don’t fit them. It’s a setup for people to fail again and again.