Every time I turn on the television or read a newspaper these days it seems that there is another politician or celebrity who has been involved in a sexual scandal.
Whether it involves prostitution rings, bathroom solicitations for homosexual encounters, child perpetrators, extra-marital affairs, pornography or multiple-partner liaisons, it seems to be rather complex and disturbing to not only those close to them but also many individuals in society.
We cannot help but wonder why people who invest years of their lives into developing a career and family will risk it all for sex.
One Medicine Hat lawyer is very wise in his warnings to others. He states “You can spend a lifetime developing a reputation and then lose it all in a second”. Some theorists believe that many people in power they think they are above the law and can do as they please. Others believe that those involved think they can purchase enough confidentiality to protect themselves from “getting caught”. A third group argues that those who are involved either consciously or subconsciously desire to get caught because they desperately want help.
There are three types of response that follow the media revelations. The first involves denial. The individual adamantly rejects any accusations and states that s/he will not be leaving whatever job or position is held. Sometimes other individuals show support through character references. It has become common to view wives who stand in silence beside the podium while her husband reads from a prepared statement.
Over time and when further information is revealed, we often hear a second type of response which involves admitting to the behaviours and then apologizing to family and society. This is usually accompanied by promises to seek out treatment and then work within the community to help others in similar situations.
The third response comes from those who admit that they were involved but deny that there is anything “wrong” with what they did. They argue that they are entitled to do as they wish because public and private matters do not overlap.
Regardless of the response that the person chooses, there are consequences. Partners are usually shocked, children are embarrassed and careers are jeopardized. Some cases even result in criminal charges or jail terms because of associated activities.
No matter what is said, it is interesting to consider how long the collective memory of society can be. Even when the individual uses his or her situation to improve the lot of others, it seems that the memory of the “original sin” is strong.
Decades after a scandal becomes media fodder, the people involved are remembered for their involvement in it. It seems a shame that people don’t understand the full impact and consequences that their choices will bring before they begin acting out their fantasies. The media would have a lot less to report when it comes to sex scandals.