As a variety of apologists step forward to laud Governor McGreevey for his allegedly courageous public coming out, he has offered his own feeble public defense in the New York Times (requires registration) of his remarkably transparent attempt to gain sympathy for his alleged victimization in order to avoid condemnation for old-fashioned corruption. His announcement led many to ask, “So why should he resign just because he’s gay? The guy’s being persecuted.” There’s no good reason to resign over sexuality. But there’s plenty of reason to resign to avoid charges of blatant corruption (such as appointing your unqualified boyfriend to be state director of homeland security).
Here’s what the Governor wrote:
“While there are many different and sometimes competing influences, it is my humble hope that my ‘coming out’ could, in some small way, help those gay Americans who have yet to become open with their sexuality. To be gay, for me, was not a choice, but simply stating a reality. Now at peace with arguably one of the most important truths of my life, it is my prayer that I will now be free to live openly and integrate my sexuality with my daily life. This integration will hopefully help my actions, my thoughts and my heart to be in alignment going forward, keeping me from the pitfalls of a divided self or secret truths.”
McGreevey hasn’t done anything to “help those gay Americans who have yet to become open with their sexuality” or to increase public acceptance of the dignity of homosexual people. He’s used all of us to deflect attention from his misuse of office (and to keep the state government and the state’s presidential electoral votes safely in the hands of his party by avoiding a gubernatorial election on the same day as the federal election). I have zero sympathy for someone who would use me as a shield for his own corruption. James E. McGreevey is neither a victim nor brave. James E. McGreevey is a despicable lout.