Anthony Weiner had a good life: a congressman who was a possible heir to the Chuck Schumer throne and married to the adoptive daughter of the Clintons. He had a personal net worth of nearly a million dollars, millions more in campaign donations, and a future written in political fantasies. So why wasn’t this enough?
Everyone knows an Anthony Weiner. They don’t all run for political office or live their lives in the public eye. But they do have a good life that they are hell-bent on destroying.
The disease of discontent is rampant in America, as people look to escape the mundane realities of life, even a good life. The thrill of fantasy — sexual fantasy in this case — overrides any understanding of consequences, whether they are professional, moral, or personal.
Are Weiner’s personal details any more tawdry than those of The Real Housewives? People in incredibly good circumstances feel the overwhelming pressure of success or the simple monotonous elements of life that they need to escape. Some find that escape in alcohol, others in sex, and still others in medication.
Peculiarly, the Anthony Weiner saga is that his is a sex scandal with no sex. Other than text messages and a few alleged phone calls between these women and Weiner — or as they knew him, Carlos Danger — nothing else transpired.
Reading over his text messages, the most interesting details were not found in the salty language — the descriptions about what Senor Danger and the women would do were the fantasies a reality. While graphic, none of the exchanges could have even been used in a Vivid Entertainment adult film.
Rather, the most interesting bits regard Weiner’s constant need for validation. At one point he asks sexting partner Sydney Leathers:
…How does that make you feel? Gross?
Me too. Staring at pictures of you. Pathetic?
If I met you at a bar and tried to talk to you, would I have a chance?
What are you thinking about? How do I look?
I’m deeply flawed.
Sadly my pictures are out there to look at. Have you ever?
What kind of man is this? Not so much a domineering alpha male with a sexual appetite so large it can’t be quenched, as a pathetic worrier who needs constant assurance that his inward torment doesn’t bleed through to the outside.
Leathers became more than Weiner’s sexual fantasy; she became his therapist and personal cheerleader — someone who would always puff his ego and give him a place to run, beyond Huma, beyond the halls of Congress.
People like that can never find satisfaction in any number of sexual partners, and certainly no number is large enough to fill the hole inside Weiner. It’s very possible no political position is mighty enough either. Power and sex are abused by those who don’t have humility, purpose, a connection with God, and the deep sense of satisfaction that in this world of constant change, there is at least one person who cares.
Whether most people acknowledge it or not, we all know an Anthony Weiner. There’s a voting bloc who can relate to Anthony Weiner as someone who seems to have everything, but can never get past their demons.
That’s why this writer hopes that Anthony Weiner stays in the mayoral race and, if need be, runs for governor next year. It will speak volumes about the state of our culture and the people who support him. And if, by chance, Weiner is elected to any future political office, it will only vindicate the words of Kent Brockman, the evening news anchor on The Simpsons, “I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, democracy simply doesn’t work.”