Friday, August 31, 2007

Some Fluff on Larry Craig (Or, Blogger Minds Run Together)

My immediate thought upon hearing about Senator Larry Craig's arrest was, "So now the Sex Police are haunting men's restrooms, making arrests for such lewd acts as putting one's bags in front of the door, tapping one's foot, and reaching for the floor under the stall??" Granted, sex in public restrooms is public lewdness and should not be allowed. And granted this under cover cop was responding to actual complaints by patrons. But surely there was a less heavy-handed way to handle it.

And even if Senator Craig's foot tapping was signalling an interest, so what? He was not making obnoxious, harrassing advances that any outsider would take offense at, or even be aware of. (That would be risking a broken nose, or worse). He was seeking a consensual encounter with a man he thought was expressing a mutual interest. He was not offering money or drugs. The worst he could be accused of was soliciting to commit public lewdness. But shouldn't the Sex Police have waited to make sure he not proposing to retire to somewhere more private? (Granted, the under cover cop could only go so far to determine Craig's intention. But I think he would have to go a little farther to be sure). Given Craig's public stance as a social conservative and perfect anti-gay voting record, I suppose the episode is worth a giggle or two. (Though certainly not his resignation). But if it had been anyone else, I would certainly have reacted with outrage at the overreaching of the Sex Police. Why should that be any different given that it was Senator Craig who was arrested?

My second thought was to wonder if anyone else felt the same way. And upon surveying the Blogsphere, I am please to report that, yes, many others share that opinion. One visitor even suggested a less heavy-handed alternative to the sex police -- how about frequent visits by the cleaning crew. Or, since visitors might not know about the frequent cleaning service, post a uniformed guard. Since the encounter took place in an airport, you could claim he was looking out for terrorists leaving behind bags with bombs. It would be the world's most boring job, but also the easiest.


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