My grandmother called hot dogs "weinies." That used to send my brother and I into fits of laughter when she served them to us for lunch. This reaction isn't a whole lot different from the coverage of the recent "Weiner" scandal. If only his name had been something else.
The question has been raised as to whether Weiner should resign. There seem to be two reasons for this.
1. He broke some kind of law or congressional code of ethics.
2. He is now politically castrated.
Ad. 1. He didn't break any laws–I think. Other people have done far worse (looking at you Senator Vitter).
2 seems to be the strongest reason. Nonetheless, it is reasonable to make a distinction between the two reasons. And it's also reasonable to think of analogous cases (Vitter, etc.). This seemst to be something local columnist John Kass does not grasp. He writes:
There's not much fun left in watching that New York liberal, U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-Pervert, twist in the political winds.
But there's a great deal of amusement still to be had watching liberal commentators twist themselves into all sorts of bizarre and unseemly shapes trying to protect Congressman Priapic.
"He lied to his wife, he lied to us, he lied to his colleagues," cried Bill Press, a liberal radio talk show host and rabid Weinerista who still doesn't think Weiner should resign.
"That is totally unacceptable," Press said of Weiner's behavior on "The Ed Show" on the liberal MSNBC the other day. "I pointed it out. Others have lied. Lying in Washington, D.C., is not a cause for losing your job, or else this would be a ghost town."
Lying isn't cause for losing your job if you're a politician, though it certainly should be.
But lying about taking your clothes off and about sending rather urgently excited photographs of your special purpose to random women — including a blackjack dealer, a porn queen and two college girls — kind of disqualifies you for public office, doesn't it?
And though the liberal press just doesn't get it, many Democrats have finally realized what Republicans would have known instinctively:
You don't want Weiner as the poster boy for your party.
Weiner sent around photos of his weiner. People apparently do that, but it's a real question as to whether someone deserves to lose their job over it; as it is not, by most accounts, actually illegal (unlike, say, prostitution). And asking that question doesn't constitute twisting yourself "into all sorts of bizarre and unseemly shapes." Nor does it really amount to "defending" weiner.