I am deeply saddened by the news of Congressman
Mark Souder’s fall into the temptation of an affair. Those of us who
have worked with Mark over the years know him to be a kind and
thoughtful legislator. If Mark Souder is capable of sexual misconduct,
it could happen to anyone. The frat house environment on Capitol Hill
does nothing to encourage accountability. Most Members do not live with
their families while they are working in D.C. during the week and have
even ditched common rules of etiquette that even major corporations
follow such as office doors with windows or careful examination of
347th verse, same as the first: Women are responsible for everything. Safeguarding our virginity from marauding males, and then once we’ve secured those males into marriage, making sure they’re not ever tempted away, because if they are, it’ll be our fault for not fucking them enough, or something. Either way, men are animals with no control over their actions.
I mean, Jesus H, there is no magic environment which makes someone a cheating hypocrite scumbag. People cheat because they want to cheat more than they want to not cheat. People will do that here, in DC, in the Arctic Circle, in frigging Brigadoon. Guys like this are just looking for a way to make it not their fault. Women don’t even exist for these dudes except as excuses to be the shitheads they’ve always wanted to be, and so long as there’s a racy girl around or a bumpin’ song playing, they can pretend to be powerless not to stick their dicks in ladies they aren’t married to.
And women scared of losing their security in a wingnut world where marriage is deified will do anything to make themselves believe they can stop their husbands from cheating on them. If the guy was just coming home to sleep in his own bed more often, he wouldn’t be tempted. Not tempted, he wouldn’t do anything. Then their family would be safe and everything would be okay.
Look, I get the argument that Ladies Against Women is making up there. I’m no stranger to the idea that when you spend all your time with the same people all day long in a high-stress environment, things get mixed up emotionally. Had this guy divorced his wife like a grown-up, confessed he had fallen in love with someone else, and then married this other chick, while preaching for sex inside the sanctity of marriage, I’d have less of a problem. People are tempted all the time. People consider things, all the time. That’s everybody. But we do men and women no favors by pretending men have no agency, and have to be watched like unruly children or dogs. No matter how crazy things got in the frat house, nobody put a gun to your head and made you fuck the cheerleader.
Seriously, we hear this all the time from conservatives of various stripes, and it really depresses the fuck out of me, the anger and the fear and the prison environment they envision for marriages. And these are the people who think everybody straight should get hitched at the age of 20 and begin making babies for the Reich. No wonder young America by and large is all, “erm, yeah, no.”