How Quickly They Turn
Jim West is a conservative. Before being mayor he was a Senator in the Washington State legislature, and before that he was a police officer for many years. By all accounts this man was a model citizen his entire life. Then one day someone tips off The Spokesman Review that West is cruising gay chat rooms. So The Review set up a sting operation where they got someone to pose as a 17 year old (soon to be 18) gay male and see if they could trap the mayor into seducing a minor. They managed to contact West and chat with him for 2 months before talking him into meeting. It's important to note that West says he did not want to have sex with the boy until he was 18, they only met for lunch and has denied ever having sex with a minor. Once he showed up for the meeting the Spokesman was sure they had the right guy, so with total disregard for his personal life and personal business, The Spokesman-Review outed him publicly.
Shortly after being outed, allegations of sexual abuse, sexual harassment, and child molestation surfaced. Mind you, none of these allegations has been proven and no charges have been brought against West, but now Jim West finds himself in a battle for his political life. The FBI has begun a preliminary probe to investigate the abuse allegations. The Spokesman-Review and the Seattle Times have both called for West's resignation.
I don't know what went on in that chat room. I don't know if Jim West sexually abused kids back in the 70's. But I think we owe it to the man to get off his back until all the details come out and the investigation is complete. He hasn't been charged with anything. Right now all we have is some allegations from a few convicted felons. If that's all it takes to remove someone from office our republic is in serious trouble.
But what really bothers me about this case is the actions of his political opponents. We've been talking on The Deep Freeze about how the left can't win elections so they have turned to other means. Most of the talk has been about trying to control the judiciary and getting activist judges to rule in their favor. There is also a plot to assassinate the character of those who disagree with them. This trend is clearly evident. Trent Lott was forced to resign his post as majority leader after he gave a few kind words to an old man which were twisted to suggest he favored segregation. Now any time a republican speaks out against minorities or gays or anything the left holds dear, they are called on to resign. It's a way of taking power from the people and overturning elections. The left has become resign happy. They want Bush to resign, they want Rumsfeld to resign, they wanted Powell to resign, they want Rice to resign. It's crazy! We can't operate a government like this.
But what really bothers me is the blatant hypocrisy of the gay community. When New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevy came out of the closet, the gay community rallied and supported him. With Jim West it's another story. The gay community has turned their backs on him and joined the calls for him to resign. Their claim is the issue is his past record on gay issues. It's no secret that West has voted against issues the gay community holds dear. They say this hypocrisy is the reason he should resign, not his sexual orientation. West says he was never a leader on those issues and he was only voting the way his constituents wanted him to vote. When you think about it, isn't that his job? What's wrong with that? All through the Presidential campaign we heard John Kerry say he personally thought abortion was wrong but he wasn't going to legislate his beliefs on others. How is this any different?
So it seems to me the only crime that Jim West has committed in the eyes of those calling for his resignation is being conservative. Apparently you aren't allowed to be a republican if you are gay. This makes sense considering how the left views other minorities. If you're a black conservative they call you Uncle Tom or Aunt Jemima. They opposed Miguel Estrada for a federal judge post because he was Hispanic and could help Hispanic voters look more favorably on the GOP. John Kerry goes to black churches and tells them the republicans want to sell them back into slavery so the best you can do is vote for him and hope to keep getting your little government handouts. It's a clear pattern by the left to suppress minorities and keep them in line with the party talking points. Speak out against us and you will be outcast. You will be demonized and we will destroy you.
If Jim West is found guilty of abusing his office or molesting children, I will be the first to call for his resignation. But until then I say innocent until proven guilty. Liberals need to stay out of his personal life and stop treating everyone who comes up with some crazy charge against a conservative as if they are an unimpeachable source.