Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Another One Bites The Dust

In what has to be the biggest political shocker not only in New York, but the rest of the country it seems the Governor of New York Eliot Spitzer or better known as client 9 to his call-girl friends has been involved in a high class prostitution ring. Mr. Spitzer was suppose to be an up and coming star in the Democratic Party despite recent setbacks in New York in his first term as Governor. How can this be I ask myself? How often have we been treated to the tawdry details of these sexual misconduct cases from politicians? You would think that the word would have gotten out about these types of activities from the many other similar cases that have come to light. I have come to the conclusion that for these people it is not about sex whether it is Eliot Spitzer or Larry Craig, no my friends it is about the adrenalin rush of getting away with something. Sex for these people is just the means to an end, to get that rush is the endgame.

How else can you explain how despite the many careers that have been ruined and images tarnished by these cases they continue to happen. Are we to assume that politicians don’t read the papers or watch the news and see their contemporaries doing the perp-walk? Are we to assume that they are so sex-starved that they can’t control themselves. No this isn’t about sex, it is about something deeper and more hideous. It is not like I am some kind of prude, but I do take marriage as a sacred bond and so it bothers me to see it violated. That to me is not the scariest part, what scares me the most is how these men who must know all that is at stake by them committing these acts continue to do so. Not only does it show a lack of judgment on the part of the person, but also a total disregard for those same things they proclaim to be valuable.

Mr. Spitzer was elected in a landslide in 2006, capitalizing on his popularity he won as the “Sheriff of Wall Street” during eight years as attorney general. With a reputation for personal probity and independence, he pledged to bring higher ethical standards to the statehouse.

Mr. Spitzer campaigned on personal integrity and high ethical standards. While many may decry his lack of moral fortitude, I am more concerned with something else. Governor Spitzer’s decision to commit adultery with prostitutes is in my opinion between him, his God, and his wife, I am not here to judge him on that count. What is of more concern to me is when your personal proclivities prevent you from doing your job. It’s like with Mayor Berry it wasn’t the fact that he smoked crack that bothered me, it was the fact that it prevented him from doing his job.

We all have our own moral compasses that we use to guide our lives and while the national pastime in America is convicting others for things we ourselves do, this only further acerbates the problem. The problem is that we have corruption at the highest levels of government and business. Everyday there are new stories of political and business leaders that have succumbed to their desires for power, wealth, and greed. The stories are as old as man himself and yet I can’t help but notice their intensity and their frequency today. There appears to be an epidemic of moral deficiency even among those who are widely viewed as “good people”. While it is not popular on the web to discuss spiritual matters, I can’t help but believe that the wide spread corruption is more than just a few men falling prey to their baser natures.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

We are not struggling against men and women who have been corrupted by power, no our struggle is against the evil forces that turn men into slaves. Slaves to their passions and to their desires and despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary they continue to risk all that they have in the belief that they will succeed where others have failed. They falsely believe that they will get to live that elusive double-life where on the one hand you can champion “American values” and on the other hand engage in a little footsies in the men’s room.

The lesson of this and all of the other similar scandals is that the enemy is not some shadowy figure lurking in the dark waiting to pounce on us. The enemy is within each one of us and that everyday it is a constant struggle to subdue those desires that will cause us pain and ruin. Everyday we all face opportunities to surrender to those desires that seek to destroy us and our fellow men, but also everyday we are presented with opportunities to overcome our selfish desires and lift ourselves and our fellows beyond where we are today. The choice belongs to each of us and it doesn’t matter what your income, position, or religion is; we still have to choose. I pray that we all may choose wisely.

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/11/nyregion/11spitzer.html?pagewanted=2&hp
[2] Ephesians 6:12 (New King James Version)

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