Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Mask 4--The Betrayal

A couple months ago Congressman Mark Foley had his meltdown as messages he had exchanged with teenage congressional pages were exposed. Disgraced, he tendered his resignation and added homosexuality, alcoholism, and prior abuse by a Catholic priest to his disclosure. This post really isn't about that, but about the fact that this guy served as a chair on the very committee addressing the exploitation of children and young adults, and we even have video footage of him talking about using electronic correspondance to stalk children precisely during the time he was emailing and text messaging sexually explicit content to teenage boys.

A month or so later, evangelical super star Ted Haggard pulled his version of the sobbing Jimmy Swaggart with quivering lip, "I have sinned against you. I have this darkness." and added the use of methamphetamines to his disclosure.

Haggard, the prior head of the 30-million member National Association of Evangelicals, vigorously attacked and condemned homosexuality and same sex marriage while he engaged in years of homosexual encounters outside of his marriage to a wife with whom he had five children.

I couldn't care less if Foley or Haggard or anyone is gay. We might as well condemn folks who have green eyes. The pathology I want to distinguish is the betrayal: The Brighter the Mask, the Darker the Soul. What I find remarkable is the footage of these guys and those like them before the fall, Foley standing before the press so proudly regarding his achievements in curbing the molestation of children, or Haggard's boastful better than thou remarks regarding homosexuality. What's going on with these guys? A statistic you won't see on CNN is that your odds of having molested a child increase over threefold if you become part of the Christian clergy, and it's not just because of the Catholics. What's that about?

Interestingly, Rabbis molest children at rates below that of the general population. Perhaps it's not considered kosher.

Now knowing what was really going on at the time, the footage of these guys is something to watch, remember Jimmy Swaggart up on that stage blasting the sinners? We now know that after these rants he'd sneak into sleazy motels to do things a prostitute called "perverted." Remember the beaming Jim Bakker on TV with Tammy Faye, praising Jesus while he committed rampant sodomy in the steamroom and eventually allowed a fling with Jessica Hahn to spin out of control?

Also fascinating are the painful denials during the implosion, "I bought it but I threw it out" or "we never had sex."

In De Palma's 1983 Scarface, Al Pacino delivers some remarks in a restaurant, "I am the last honest crook you will ever see. I always tell the truth. Even when I lie, I tell the truth."

Drug dealer, killer, thief, but even when he lies, there is an authenticity. At another point in the film he states, "In this life all I have are my balls and my word, and I don't give up either for nobody."

Who cares what Foley emails to whom so long as they are responsible adults? I couldn't care less what Haggard did with Mike Jones.

What is worth considering is what Haggard did to Gayle Alcorn, his wife of 28 years and mother of his five children.

It is one thing to be a complete fraud living a lie because you've chosen to do so. It is another matter entirely to find out you've been living a lie for years and and didn't even know. When I replay the footage, now knowing what was really happening, it makes for interesting viewing. When she presses replay, now knowing what she knows, she isn't playing a video, and it alters the very nature of her life.

In the far less impressive 1999 The General's Daughter, James Woods is being asked what crime has been committed, "Murder?"

Woods replies, "Worse."

What is worse than murder?

Ask Gayle Alcorn.


Blogger Chris Tan said...

I don't think we have to consider or feel sorry for what Haggard had done to his wife, Gayle Alcorn of 28 years and mother of his five children. First of all, she is still by his side and she seems to believe that he is innocent and one who can reform. She does NOT seem to be heart-broken and she still put up the act for being a strong woman. We should ONLY feel sorry if she realized that her husband has been lying to her and leading double lives. If someone feels that Christianity or she herself can reform or change her husband from a gay person to a straight person, why should we feel sorry for her????????????

11/23/2006 2:12 AM  
Blogger x4mr said...


It's too early. Give her some time, at least a year. Some need longer than that.

11/23/2006 11:58 PM  

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