Scorpion of Light (2006)
Ellen Goodman says:
If I had my druthers, this election would have turned on the war in Iraq. I hoped that when the voters finally got it, "it" would have been the disaster that's turned this war zone into a recruiting ground for terrorists.
Instead we have the self-described party of family values caught enabling or at least ignoring a sick puppy of a congressman, Mark Foley, who was sex-talking electronically to teenage pages. Instead we have Speaker Dennis Hastert dismissing such an exchange as merely "over-friendly" and White House press secretary Tony Snow describing the messages as "naughty." We even have right-wing Webmaster Matt Drudge blaming the teenagers themselves as "16- and 17-year-old beasts."
This scandal is what has registered on the political Richter scale. This is what voters are asking their representatives about. Well, I wouldn't have chosen to play on this field, but I will take it.
The Republicans have been all-too-successful in getting a hold on the language and politics of values. There isn't a parent in this country who doesn't wince at and worry about the sexualization of children all over the culture from the clothing racks to the Internet. But the right has grabbed onto the free-floating anxiety and attached it to everything on their agenda from abstinence-only education to the dismissal of a Texas teacher for taking her kids to a museum that had nude statues.
Now we are beginning to get "it." The self-proclaimed party of moral values can't keep its own House in order. The Republicans in charge of too much for too long have one value they now hold above all others: staying in power. Got it? Well, that's a start.
It doesn't much matter how and where you're stung...