Like everybody else, I was flabbergasted beyond belief to learn of John Edwards' extramarital affair in 2006. It was as shocking and stunning as JFK's, RFK's, and John Lennon's assassinations. It boggles the mind to think someone could carry on like that after his wife had recently fought breast cancer and was then in remission, and who still has relatively young children. For a man who had come from very humble beginnings and had successfully amassed great wealth by dilligently and benevolently working on behalf of countless victims and the less fortunate people, it is unfathomable that he could show such short-sighted selfishness and thoughtlessness.
John and Elizabeth Edwards have both worked very hard all their professional careers to aid the needy. They have both been very selfless in this regard and have poured a lot of their just reward and compensation into help for the poor. Now all of their work, or at least John Edwards' effectiveness and credibility in pursuing it, has been shattered. It is a terrible tragedy, for the entire Edwards family, for the people they strive to help, and even for the country as a whole. The last thing Elizabeth needs at this time, as she battles courageously for her causes AND her life after being diagnosed with a recurrence of her now-incurable cancer, is this added stress and public humiliation. We can only hope the media will extend a rare cortesy to her and allow the Edwards family the privacy they seek and truly need at this time.
We can only wonder what goes through the minds of people like Bill Clinton, Idaho Senator Larry Craig, and John Edwards when, as successful public figures, they engage in such indiscretions which result in shame and public outrage. Is it ego-deficiency, or a hormonal imbalance which leads them to such destructive behavior? Are these people otwardly wise but inwardly stupid? We can only wonder, as behavior like theirs seems to defy logic.
One can only hope that John Edwards will fully and truly realize the devastation his silly and unnecessary tryst has wrought, and that he will rededicate himself with increased vigor and reckless abandon to the causes he has worked for and championed. His political effectiveness may be over for good, but there is still much beneficial work he can accomplish. Let us hope that he does just that!
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