Newt Gingrich has finally said something I agree with. Earlier this week, “Family Values” Gingrich declared that the personal lives of Presidential candidates shouldn’t become an issue in the 2008 campaign. This was in the same month that he went on a conservative talk radio show to confess the extramarital affair he was carrying on while he pursued President Clinton’s impeachment in the Monica Lewinsky scandal. We’re used to this by now. Have you noticed that the more adamantly the Family Values Folk insist on high standards of public virtue for the rest of us, the less likely they are to exemplify these standards in their own lives? This is called hypocrisy. Compulsive gambling, drug addiction, consorting with gay hookers, fathering illegitimate children are just a few of the personal foibles of our holier-than-thou public personages.
But Newt is right. Everybody’s private life has its messy patches, so who’s to cast the first stone? Much better to accept that human failings are just that: human. Then maybe all these troubled Family Values campaigners could emerge from their isolated closets and seek help for their problems.