Wednesday, May 18, 2011
"Hasta la vista, Baby!"--Wednesday Journal
I don't mean to be glib. It would be too easy to make a lame joke about just how long it took him to return at night when he said, "I'll Be Back".
The breaking story of Arnold Schwarzenegger fathering a child with a household employee, ten years ago while married to Maria Shriver, is embarrassing, painful, and any more, almost blase..
The innocent members of his family, close associates, and public supporters of Schwarzenegger, are feeling the pangs of betrayal.
Most families caught in similar circumstances can adjust, heal, and carry on, outside the spotlight of media scrutiny.
But there's little sympathy left in me for privileged people like Arnold, ostensible role-models, leaders who make decisions that affect the private lives of millions, who are exposed as hypocrites. I might be more forgiving if they didn't condemn such behavior in others, holding themselves as the standard-bearers of "moral" living. I hate it most when revered pop-culture icons and politicians behave this way.
Arnold happened to be both.
Are they all that way? Am I that naive? I will give myself some benefit of the doubt...
Arnold, in the balance, caused much pain to his family. In the grand scheme, I find his behavior only a little less reprehensible than transgressors like Mel Gibson or Newt Gingrich, people who either build their careers on self-righteous ideology or who spew their venomous hate in public. Arnold made some grave errors, and he has lost the public trust (for a while) and he has a hard road to repair.
But as voters, we sort of have to blame ourselves for the leaders we elect. Why can't Americans stop voting for B-movie actors, career politicians, and unctuous glad-handers to represent them as their statesmen? When will we demand better from the leaders who represent us?
It will be interesting to follow Schwarzenegger's reentry into a movie career. As far as I'm concerned, he's "Terminated".