Tuesday, November 08, 2011
So now Cain has faced a steady din of accusations of improper behavior. The first were, to me, very suspect: vague, unprovable, he-said/she-said and long after the fact. Classic hit-jobs. They had every sniff of being an attempt to get rid of Cain, to Clarence-Thomas him. Yet even those, Cain didn't handle particularly well.
Now a specific woman has stood up with specific allegations in specific places and time. Yet even this is awfully hard to assess.
On the one hand: Gloria Allred. Period. That any woman would pick Gloria Allred to represent her immediately calls everything about her into question. Plus, the alleged victim smiles and seems awfully happy through the whole thing. Plus, while she has contemporary witnesses, she didn't tell even them the specifics. Plus his alleged behavior, even if true, stopped the moment she told him to stop.
And yet, I know that outwardly inappropriate behavior doesn't mean the story isn't true. It could simply be embarrassing, and that's how she deals. Could also explain her not telling her friends at the time.
But what "gets" me even more is how she stresses that Cain stopped immediately and took her back to her place immediately. If she were making it up, if she were living in the world of "nobody can prove me wrong," if she's trying to fabricate a picture of Cain as an unhinged predator, why not make it worse? Why not put more nasty words in his mouth? Why not make him more insistent? Why not paint him as refusing to stop immediately, as refusing to take her back immediately? It's as if she's consciously not trying to paint it as worse than it is... and that doesn't sound like a liar.
(However, the pushback is already beginning: see here, here, and here. I don't know what to think, but I do know what to do: keep an open mind and closed principles.)
So it's bad, and I don't see how he gets out of it; and that's bad.
Having said all that, I do also say these things:
When there's smoke, sometimes there isn't even smoke. Accusations are just accusations, and the more scandalous and unfalsifiable, the worse.
My then-little kids and I used to drive a route regularly where we saw great billowing clouds of smoke. At first, we thought something was really burnin' down the house. But then I realized that these clouds disappeared fairly abruptly after the initial billows. That's because it wasn't smoke at all; it was steam, and steam dissipates.
So sometimes something that looks awfully damning and substantial can dissipate pretty suddenly under examination and reflection.
It's well-nigh impossible to prove a negative. Have you ever been alone with a child or a member of the opposite sex? Without witnesses? Ever? Of course you have.
Now just imagine that person making a shocking and false accusation; or someone else making a shocking and false about the two of you. How do you disprove that? "Here's a picture of me not doing what you say I did. And here's a video of the two of us not doing what you said we did." Can't be done. Think about that, seriously think about it. Think about bearing that burden.
Character sniping is a popular passtime. It's cheap and easy to make accusations, seem to be a victim, get sympathy, and move on, leaving another's character forever tarnished.
That's why I think we should have some form of the Mosaic law about false accusations (Deut. 19:15-21). Slander should cost something.
People set out to destroy people who make them feel bad about their sin. For years I've sought for a way to express this well, and I still don't have it... beyond that statement.
Here's how it works: Pastor/politician/person A makes you feel bad for your sin or inadequacy. You have two choices: repent and deal, or destroy him so you can feel better about your sin.
Those who don't opt for the first usually opt for the second.
So, to many people Herman Cain simply represents a threat to abortion and a threat to racial entitlement, among other things. So they want to destroy him, period. That will go a long way to explaining much, though (as I've said) it won't necessarily explain everything.
The double-standard between the parties stinks. The GOP, as a rule, carries out its own trash; the Dems, as a rule, regard such things as résumé-enhancers. The reason, I think, is simple and plain, though many are reluctant to say it. It is that of the two relevant parties the GOP is as a rule the friendliest home to practicing Christians, and the Democratic party as a rule is the friendliest home to people who really really hate Jesus.
Now, do note the qualifier. Lots of Republicans really, really hate Jesus; and... well, frankly, I rather think fewer and fewer Democrats love Him much, as their party's lead positions show seething contempt for God, but I don't doubt there are some who do. Wrongheadedly, but nonetheless.
But that being the case, the GOP cares more about its candidates' morality, and the Democratic party just doesn't. (Andrew Klavan adds some pretty terrific thoughts to this, as well, as does Doug Wilson.)
So here's Bill Clinton, who uses his office and power to sexually use women and abuse them and then cover it up. And the Dems form ranks to protect him, at all costs, period. The Dems sold their soul to keep Bill Clinton in office, and they never bought it back.
Why? See the previous reason. Bill Clinton was the best friend pro-aborts ever had in the White House, until Obama. He represented wonderful things to many really bad people. So he was to be protected, and his opponents destroyed.
Those are my thoughts, offered for what they're worth.
Oh, and by the way: do you think I was just talking about politics?
Nah, you're smart folks.