Thursday, March 13, 2008

Notes On a Scandal

Ok, the last thing the world needs right now is another commentary on the Spitzer mess, but I need to get something off my chest.

Since the real identity of 'Kristen' was revealed, I've seen the shift in the focus of the media coverage from Spitzer to Ms. Dupre. That is to be expected, of course - now that there is a face, everyone wants to see this woman who 'brought the governor down'.

That phrase is exactly what is making me fume (amongst other things).

Before anyone knew who 'Kristen' was, this was about Spitzer and his colossally stupid mistake. His ego, his sexual proclivities, his hypocrisy.

All of sudden, however, she has become the 'other' woman. The temptress who caused this sordid mess. All of a sudden, her MySpace page is being dissected for clues: she's an aspiring singer, loves Aretha & Sinatra, had a difficult childhood, but through it all she persevered to follow her dream to come to NYC and begin her music career. Her mom says that 'she's a very bright girl who could handle someone like the governor'.


People!!! She was not Spitzer's girlfriend. She was the woman he paid TO HAVE SEX. He was not having an affair with her. He wasn't going to leave his wife and daughters for her. Who she really is irrelevant - it is not going to make us all understand why Spitzer did this, and all it does is shift the focus and responsibility away from him. She did nothing wrong (except for working at a job that is illegal, and unfortunately for her, she got caught).

And frankly, if she wasn't pretty, do you really think anyone would care who she was?


Anonymous C said...

Agreed. The modern media seems to have little problem exhibiting gender bias which would be unacceptable outside of a frat party. The ability of our cultural articulations to place women on a perpetual 'walk of shame' regardless of their position is telling and saddening.

However, what I find most disturbing is how the mechanisms used in order to deliver this discrimination seem so obvious. Ms. Dupre's story is important, but to use it as a means to weaken the position of Spitzer being a complete hypocrite is unsettling.


10:03 AM  
Blogger Signore said...

Amen! There is a definite sexist bias when "reporting" these things. The only one who "brought down Eliot Spitzer" was Mr. Spitzer.

8:17 AM  

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