In Brief: Sex for Money Is No Barrier to Dems
Are we really having a conversation about how prostituting yourself on the internet isn’t disqualifying for public office?
“It was only a matter of time before politicians took their whoring from the realm of figurative to literal,” says veteran journalist Mark Hemingway. He’s referring to the flap over Susanna Gibson and her husband.
With the recent revelation that a Virginia Democrat running for a statehouse seat has filmed sex acts online for money, you might be forgiven for seeing the total fusion of the world’s two oldest professions as a sign of the end times. I myself am not one for Left Behind-style mumbo jumbo, but let me tell you, the fact that Democrats are fundraising off of this and the media are out there defending this woman is not a harbinger of anything good.
To recap, control of the Virginia legislature is hotly contested – and one of the Democratic candidates in one of the most competitive races, Susanna Gibson, is a nurse practitioner and mother of two. Oh, and it turns out she’s also someone who performs sex acts with her husband online, in front of an audience, for money. A Republican operative tipped off the Washington Post about this, who confirmed that Gibson “streamed sex acts on Chaturbate, a platform that says it takes its name from "the act of masturbating while chatting online.” Well, there’s a portmanteau for the ages, but Gibson’s unseemly oeuvre can be seen on various places all over the internet because it turns out “Chaturbate videos are streamed live on that site and are often archived on other publicly available sites.”
The double standards for Democrats are the thing of legend, Hemingway acknowledges, as is the the wagon circling of the media. Examples abound.
Did I mention Gibson had 5,700 “followers” on this Chaturbate site? Look, if you are streaming sex acts for money on the internet for thousands of people and you are shocked – shocked! – that those videos were recorded and disseminated, you’re either lying or too stupid to hold political office. But forget her lawyer, Ms. Gibson’s faux outrage is far more offensive. “My political opponents and their Republican allies have proven they’re willing to commit a sex crime to attack me and my family,” she said in a statement quoted by the [New York] Times. That the Times lets a woman who’s solely responsible for her own public humiliation accuse others of “sex crimes” for pointing out that she’s all over the internet having sex for money without any pushback – well, it says volumes about the Times’ own meretricious behavior.
But the real coup de grâce here is Gibson’s characterization of this thing that she did to herself as an attack on “my family.” If it’s so horrifying for her kids to see mom having sex on the internet, why would you risk it in the first place? Even if Gibson didn’t run for office, the odds of her kids finding out about this are far from nonexistent. I won’t begin to suggest that she’s not otherwise a good mother – I sincerely hope she is – but don’t dare dodge accountability by hiding behind your kids. Good luck selling voters on the notion that if this revenge porn tiger mom is elected, it won’t be the Virginia Whorehouse of Delegates, it will be the Virginia Whorehome of Delegates.
Hemingway has plenty of other things to say, but we’ll skip to his conclusion:
If you resent – and I hardly think I’m alone here – the fact that your choices at the ballot box are between one corrupt amoral exhibitionist and another corrupt amoral exhibitionist with slightly more enticing policy preferences, maybe it’s worth attempting to reclaim some semblance of agreement surrounding traditional morality. It shouldn’t be difficult to forge a consensus that Susanna Gibson’s nasty accusations and laughable attempts to blame others for her immoral behavior render her unfit for office – but here we are.
- Mark Hemingway
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