Saturday, September 30, 2006

Disgusting. Disgraceful.

MAF54: did any girl give you a haand job this weekend
Xxxxxxxxx: lol no
Xxxxxxxxx: im single right now
Xxxxxxxxx: my last gf and I broke up a few weeks agi
MAF54: are you
MAF54: good so your getting horny

This is an exchange between Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL 16) and a sixteen year-old congressional page.

There’s a level of depravity that goes beyond the obvious.

Gay, straight, or all of the above, sixteen year-olds should obviously be off limits, and it’s a disgrace that Mark Foley was walking the hallowed halls of Congress.

No, the greatest depravity was not even his--- Dennis Hastert has known about this for eleven months, which makes him the Cardinal Law of Capitol Hill.



Blogger Jim Maynard said...

I have mixed feelings about the Foley situation...
While I think it is appropriate to condemn anti-gay Republicans who turn out to be closeted/repressed "homosexuals", I don't think having or feeling romantic or "sexual" relations with a 16 year old makes one a "pedophile," and I do not agree with our archaic "age of consent laws." On the other hand, i agree that it is inappropriate for a Cognress member to have such relations with a page, especially if it is not consensual...
I feel some sympathy for Foley because (a) he was a "moderate" Republican, not a raging anti-gay right winger and (b) he obviously has had a difficult time dealing with his own sexual identity and has "forced" himself to repress and hide it. I guess he is partly to blame, but there are some oppressive political and societal forces at work here too. So this one is s little complicated, and I don't think progressives and the left should be so quick to label Foley a "pedophile," I don't think he is and it is unfair to accuse him of being one.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 10:37:00 AM  
Blogger autoegocrat said...

I diagree strongly. Pedophilia occurs when an older person, by virtue of age, takes advantage of the relative immaturity of a younger person. There are no hard and fast lines, one does not suddenly become mature at a certain age. But we're talking about a United States Congressman and a 16-year old page.

This isn't some abstract hypothetical so close to the edge of definition as to leave room for doubt. This is a powerful man taking advantage of a young boy and it should be condemned in the strongest possible terms. Foley is a pedophile and there should be no hesitation in calling him one.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger David Holt said...

I'm with auto. The homosexuality portion of the situation doesn't even come into the equation. If I had been putting the moves on the girls I taught in high school it would have been just as dispicable. It is wrong without question for an adult in a position of power to sexually approach a minor.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 11:06:00 AM  
Blogger Jim Maynard said...

I agree with the point about using one's position of power (i.e. a teacher, Senator, etc.) to take advantage of young people under them,, so I agree wth condemning that.
I have a problem with the societal "double standard" that has traditionally set arbitrary and unfair "ages of consent" usually allowing men to have relations with girls as young as 15, but having higher "ages of consent" for mem and boys. Why is it "wrong" for a man to have a consensual relationship with a teenage boy who is 16 or 17 (that not a child), and OK for a man to have a relationship with a teenage girl who is 15 or 16? (I believe that England still has such unequal "ages of consent" laws there that the gay movement is fighting).
Not sure about the laws in the U.S. but I think they vary from one state to another don't they?
I personally think a 16 or 17 year old can and should be allowed to consent to a relationship with an "adult". I do strongly condumn relationships between adults and children (not sure where to draw that line, but clearly 16 or 17 is too high). That's all a different issue, though, since we clearly have a case here of a congressman abusing his power and crossing that line... But I still don't think being attacted to a 16 or 17 year old makes a person a pedophile.
I guess as a gay man I see a double standard. Women who have relationsips with teenage boys are usually not treated as harshly as men who have relationships with teenage boys.
Again, I think any such relationship should be mutually consensual, but I don't think they should be illegal or people called "sick" labelled pedophgiles for it.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 11:35:00 AM  
Blogger Jim Maynard said...

Sorry for the typos, the point I guess I am making is that the "age of consent" laws should be changed to about 15-16 for men and women. It should be equal and fair, and not label people as pedophiles who are attraced to a 17 year old as opposed to an 18 year old.
That is a much larger issue that the Foley situation, and I guess not worth pursuing here. He should be condemned if he was using his position to take advantage of pages. And the GOP should be condemned if they tried to hide or cover it up. It is another example of GOP hypocrisy.
(I'll drop my soap box about arbitrary "age of consent" laws.)

Saturday, September 30, 2006 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Freedonian said...

I'm twenty years younger than Mark Foley. But if I was trying to bang a sixteen-year-old, I would have an ass whipping coming to me, and not the good kind. After that, I would expect to be prosecuted.

I don't believe the norms for AOC are as different as you think. The law might not prosecute men for sleeping with fifteen year old girls, but I am of the opinion that it should be prosecuted more. And it takes a really public, high profile case for prosecutors to go after women that sleep with teenage boys.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Maynard said...

Correction..I think I said that 16-17 was too high for "age of consent" laws, but I meant to say that 18 is too high. I think it should be 15 or 16. 16 may be a good compromise that I think would protect everyone's rights.
But it should not be as arbitrary as it is now. In England, it is legal for a straight person (man or woman) to have relationships with 15 yeard olds of the opposite sex, but its illegal for a gay man to have a relationship with a 17 year old. That's what bothers me...the different societal reaction to inter-generational relationships.
As for Foley, in the initial reportsa bout the emails with the page, he only asked the guy for his picture and made comments about how one page was in good shape. The societal reaction to THAT was that he was a sick pedophile. I was bothered by the reactions to a man asking a teenage boy for his picture or even complimenting him on being in good shape..
There are more emails, evidently, where he does get more sexually explicit, and I do consider them inappropriate.

Saturday, September 30, 2006 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger newscoma said...

First of all, I don't see this as a gay thing at all. And I'm hoping to Christ this isn't spun into an issue of homosexuality because it clearly is not. It's an issue of sexual inappropriateness with a misuse of power and, to another extent, our elected officials hiding things for their own gain, which is another element of the misuse of power.
I see Foley as a predator. Whether he was a democrat or a republican makes no difference to me. We are the adults, and with the age of consent where it is, we should act like responsible adults. I also don't care if he sent these e-mails to a boy or a girl, it was just plain wrong.
The other thing is, with the allegations that so many in the GOP knew about this and covered it up is doubly "disgusting and disgraceful."
Jim, I see your point but I agree with the other folks. David said it well and I agree.
It's about power.

Sunday, October 01, 2006 8:56:00 AM  
Blogger Jim Maynard said...

Well, forget everything I said about having some sympathey for Foley. At first I thought maybe he was a a moderate repressed homosexual Republican, and a victim of a homophobic "double standard," but after reading his moralizing against Bill Clinton and other issues, and seeing the sleezy emails, changed my mind. He is a pervert...If he had just asked for the pages picture. I don't think it is pedophilia for an adult to be attracted to OLDER (16-18) teenagers, but certainly in these situations it is inappropriate for "superioriors" to take adavantage of them. And he is obviously a hypocrite...

So I stand corrected.

Monday, October 02, 2006 8:08:00 AM  

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