In This Case, Weiner Outburst Justified
by Anthony Stasi
Sep 10, 2013 | 1523 views | 0 0 comments | 133 133 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The well-publicized kerfuffle between mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner and a man in a Brooklyn bakery last week was considered by many to be just another weird event involving the controversial candidate.

Assuming that this was a completely spontaneous event, Weiner did what any man should have done: he defended his wife. Throughout this campaign, Weiner has dealt with his share of hecklers, and for good reason.

He jumped into this race quickly after resigning from Congress, and the reason why was still fresh in everyone’s mind. The scandal mattered with regard to his judgment and common sense. But what transpired between Weiner and the man last week was different.

It's fair to argue that there is just way too much of our lives recorded and uploaded to Youtube. Any campaign has its share of awkward moments. I’ve had mine, and I have given it back to a potential voter or two. In the end, we are all just people.

This incident, however, was “shared” on a Facebook page in support of Weiner. It titled the incident “The candidate with the thickest skin.” (It was not the best wording.)

It showed Weiner reiterating that his only judge - referring to his texting scandal - was his wife and his God. His supporters, on this particular Facebook page, wanted people to hear that.

Any time a person brings your spouse into an argument, it is okay to respond. The man, after throwing a left hook to Weiner’s character, followed that by mentioning Weiner's wife is Arabic. (The man used the word Arab, so I am using Arabic instead of Middle Eastern.)

I am not so sure Weiner even heard that as he exited the bakery, only to return later. But if he had, he would have been right to defend his family. No matter how much damage this man may have done to his own relationship, he is right to protect it from outside trouble.

Anthony Weiner’s personal pitfalls do not negate the man’s right to defend his family. Families are not fair game in these campaigns.

Getting Serious About Syria

There is a good possibility that if the U.S. were to strike Syria (and it may have by the time this hits print), it will be a short and deliberate action. It will most likely not result in a protracted U.S. Involvement, but that might be a problem.

This debate is more about the actual decision than it is about the results, and two major players have stepped away from their usual viewpoints.

To hear Senator John McCain argue that a “no” vote from Congress would weaken the presidency is nothing short of puzzling. Was the presidency weakened when President Ronald Reagan wanted to put Marines in Lebanon and was opposed by then Rep. John McCain?

And maybe McCain supports action in Syria for good reason, but why would opposition in Congress weaken the presidency, an office that has grown too muscular in the mind of many constitutional scholars?

When Barack Obama defeated McCain in 2008, it was due in large part to Obama’s insistence that McCain would continue the “saber rattling” of the Bush administration.

Obama used to love gluing the “saber rattling” phrase to political opponents, but he has not used that phrase very often in recent years. Is threatening a country with a missile strike not a major grip of the sword?

When Secretary of State John Kerry faced the Senate last week, there were two questions that seemed to trip him up. One was whether this could result in a more hostile regime taking over Syria, and the other was whether our assistance was somehow aiding the efforts of certain terrorist groups who also want regime change in Syria.

Those are important questions, and Kerry was wobbly on them at best. There is a good chance that this action will blow over in a few months, but it would seem as though two men that once opposed each another are acting in unison - and somewhat out of character.

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