Friday, August 2, 2013

Geez. Leave Colin Powell alone.

He's denying it, but it appears from emails released by a hacker that Colin Powell had a pretty personal relationship and possibly an affair with a Romanian politician. I won't bore you with the "why do we care about public figures' sex-lives" diatribe, as that's been well-tread. What I want to know is why this should be considered a strike against citizen Powell, who is not currently employed by the American people.
How do you not have an affair with this guy?

Colin Powell has made a name for himself for being a moderate and generally trustworthy (except that one time) military and political figure. He most recently raised the ire of conservatives over his endorsement of Barack Obama over Mitt Romney, which was, according to some douchebag on the radio, obviously because they're both black. Before that, Powell had served in the Reagan and Bushes 41 & 43 administrations, not to mention that whole 4-star general thing. While in those capacities, if it had been exposed that he was having or had had an affair with a foreign politician of an allied nation, it would have been nobody's business unless national secret swapping was part of some weird pillow-talk ritual. Maybe his wife would have been rightly pissed, but it wouldn't have been anyone else's business unless government money or national security was involved.

That would have been the case when he was in the employ of the United States. He's not now. Now, Colin Powell is a pretty smart guy whose sex life, like the rest of his life, is entirely private. The way this information came to public attention was itself illegal and, unlike the Bradley Manning or Edward Snowden leaks, which one could argue at least had some semblance of public interest, it has nothing to do with government policy, national security, or even have to do with how government works. They're private emails on an American citizen's private account.

While the whole nation is losing their goddamn minds over whether the NSA is spying on us, there seems to be no outrage toward the personal information of private citizens being made public. What this hacker did to Colin Powell was worse than anything the NSA has done to anyone reading this. If you're concerned with your own privacy, you should be shaming the media for running these stories and calling for serious consequences for hackers of this type.

If this kind of thing continues, it will further discourage good people from running for office in fear that the things they do privately will lead to their names being dragged through the mud. Then all we'll have left are the Anthony Weiners and Mark Sanfords of the world - public figures who don't have any dignity, and so don't care when it is sullied.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Matt, this is the whole dumbing down of America