Could we all please welcome Mr. Mayor. This is Miss USA. Say hello, Mel. That's former congressman Foley over there. And that's Robin, Keith, Whitney and Lindsey.....
That's right. San Francisco's young mayor, Gavin Newsom, is seeking counseling (not rehab, just "counseling") for his alcohol use, a week following the bombshell that he had a brief affair with an employee, who also happened to be the wife of a good friend/top aide.
I've been keeping my hands still and tongue quiet about the whole sex scandal going on at San Francisco's City Hall (read the latest from ABC7 News), because the story was getting plenty of coverage from all corners and there wasn't anything I could add that hadn't already been said. (Although I particularly liked the op-ed by The SFChronicle's Debra J. Saunders, who advised Gavin to just "grow up").
But when I saw this morning's banner headline "Newsom to Seek Help for Alcohol Abuse," and picture of Newsom, which was chosen by the editors at The Chron and takes up nearly the entire top half of the paper, I couldn't help but weigh in.
The picture shows Newsom bent over, clutching his stomach like he's suffering some major withdrawal symptoms or internal pain of some sort (bad tuna?). Although the photo's caption explains that he's actually attending a meeting of some sort - the damage is already done.
No doubt he IS feeling the pain of his indiscretion. But that single shot - much larger than any picture used by the paper of the tragedy that is Iraq, or the pain and suffering elsewhere in the world - shows just how out of balance coverage of this pathetic, sad story has been.
In her popular blog The Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington, who knows Newsom, recently asked "why is this a public matter?" It's public, because it involved a mayor, how he treats his employees and friends, and how his actions will affect his run for re-election.
MY question is not why it is public...but how high up on the news priority ladder should it be?
The most current edition of Vanity Fair, which has it's own "Fame and Scandal" section, features an entire James Wolcott piece called "Why Are British Sex Scandals So Much Better Than Ours." Are we actually making too little of the Newsom story, or not enough? Is it the media that's driving the story...or readers who can't get enough of it?
I don't have the answer. I'm looking for your feedback. There's quite a conversation going on over at the ABC7 I-Team's blog. But I want YOU to tell me what YOU are thinking about the scandal, And more specifically, the coverage of the scandal. Click below on "Comments" and start a conversation.
Meantime, I'm sure Gavin is breathing a sigh of relief that an even sadder, more pathetic love triangle involving two NASA astronauts, is taking the spotlight off him...at least today.
He was a hard-headed man
He was brutally handsome, and she was terminally pretty...
Life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind, mm
Are you with me so far?