Queens Residents Weigh In On Weiner Scandal

Posted: June 12, 2011 in New York City, Politics, Uncategorized

It’s obvious that Queens-based congressman Anthony Weiner has had a lot more to tackle lately than his debates with members of the Tea Party and the extreme right-wing, ever since his sex scandal unfolded virally on the Internet on Monday, June 6th. Accused of showing a photo of his genitalia on the social network Twitter, which may or not actually be his, he’s run up against opposition by such personalities as former president Bill Clinton, and seemingly-cooing admiration by Barbara Walters on the daily panel show The View. New developments have erected themselves within the last few days, including a request for a leave of absence to enter a rehab program for sex addicts.  But what must be considered are the thoughts of his constituents in the Central Queens neighborhoods represented by the 9th Congressional District. The biggest question most are being asked is exactly what the gentleman should do.

“He should admit he made a mistake, and state that he is getting counseling for his problems and his lapse in judgment,” says Janet Arnold of Rego Park.  “He’ll be as effective as he was before. His work is absolutely separate from his foolish mistake. If he was doing a good job before, he will continue by all means.”

Ava Barzvi, also of Rego Park and a community leader with her Rego Park Group on Yahoo, says, “He should resign with his head between his legs. He can’t be trusted, because he admitted he is a liar. I feel he should not be representing us, because the young people learn from him. He has given speeches at Forest Hills High School, and he is not a good role model. People who do this type of thing should not get away with it. It is embarrassing for our district, and this neighborhood has so much good in it that nobody talks about. There should be only people of high moral integrity and compassion in politics who want to help our community, and the future generations. This is something that has not been talked about enough. The whole event is private between him and his wife as far as I’m concerned, and I feel so bad for her.”

Meanwhile, Peter Schiftan of Kew Gardens contends, “He should do nothing. He’s just as effective a representative of my district as always. But that doesn’t mean I’m necessarily happy with his representing my district. He lied to the American people, and that’s just wrong.” And Maryjane Heyer of Richmond Hill adds, “I’m fine with him representing my district. But if he can stay on and keep representing us, I think it will be a wonderful example of fortitude against American prudishness.”

Joe Lara of Forest Hills goes further to say, “Honestly, I think the media influences all too many times the court of public opinion, forcing public personalities to have to rigorously apologize for everything they do, no matter how meager or insignificant. Anthony Weiner’s office is literally down the block from where I live, and I truly believe that this is a matter to be handled between him and his wife. He did something stupid out of being drunk with power, but in the end, who are we to judge? We all make mistakes. That’s why it makes me sick to see members of Congress, who have the dirtiest hands and even dirtier souls of anyone, passing judgment on him. I can almost guarantee that each and every person in Congress who comments on this have done much, much worse; they just haven’t been found out yet.”

And Victoria Steinberg, a Forest Hills resident and Harvard graduate who was raised in Elmhurst and has spent decades devoting her energy to Democratic causes as a volunteer, offers her take. “I didn’t know about him taking a leave of absence to seek treatment, although that bothers me, because I thought his unrepentant, ‘I’m a jerk and that’s that’ stance, was far more genuine than any great show of repentance. That being said, it may be the best way to salvage his career, since a lot of people love the whole repentant-sinner thing. Not that I’d ever believe it, but someone might. As I’ve said previously to others, I’ve always thought Weiner was annoying, but I liked his policy stances and his forthright way of conveying them. I do think, in the short run, that he’ll be less effective, since he won’t be getting booked onto any news-talk shows as a fervent advocate for liberal policies. But, I do think it can blow over in time. I do not want him to resign, particularly in light of people like Senator Vitter who, unlike Weiner, actually had sex, and with prostitutes to boot, not resigning and being re-elected. Or Senator Ensign not resigning until it was clear he’d be severely reprimanded by the Ethics Committee. I don’t mind Weiner representing me, since I thought he was an appalling personally before this.” She adds, “I’m not sure I consider this strictly a private matter, since he was Tweeting quite publicly, but the only wounded party is definitely his wife, since he did nothing untoward to his constituents.”

Nothing adds to the confusion more than the fact that Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, who promptly left town for Abu Dhabi after the scandal hit the Internet, is pregnant with their first child. “This whole thing should be between him and his wife,” says Forest Hills resident Gary Dobkin. “I don’t think he should resign, but I also don’t think he’ll ever be considered a responsible representative of our area. He’s a very gifted politician, but there’s something extremely narcissistic about him. And the need to be such an exhibitionist is very unusual.”

Whatever the next step happens to be for Anthony Weiner is anyone’s guess. But he clearly has a very large community of people in the borough of Queens who feel very strongly about the entire matter, either pro or con. Which is probably just as it should be.

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Comments
  1. Stephan says:

    When the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal was at its height, I listened to all these sex experts on TV and radio from Dr. Brothers to Dr. Westheimer and they all said the same thing. Men who are extremely intelligent in politics have no judgement when it comes to sex. Intelligence flies out the window and they make bad decisions and do stupid things. They indicated that it might be a kind of mental disorder but didn’t go to say it outright as no serious studies have been done on the subject but they said it is a kind of disability. I think that Mr. Weiner is in the same boat. with every other politician that has an affair, harrassed women, hired prostitutes and had children out of wedlock. The Republicans give them a free pass if they are Republican. No questions asked and no handwringing or gnashing of teeth. With these sex scandals, the rest of the world is laughing at us and wondering why we are so preoccupied with a subject that we so dislike talking about. If we fired every man and woman that had an affair and lied about it, unemployment would be well over 60%. If he is indeed a sex addict, then you can’t fire him from his job due to the Americans With Disabilities Act.

  2. He is a great politician……it would be a shame to lose him over this stupid sex scandal. I am not sure he can live this one down but I hope he does!

  3. stevenL says:

    Is 1 Ascan right across from that Catholic church on Queens Blvd? Damn, I used to live there.
    Now, is there a liberal equivalent of Andrew Breitbart?
    When such a person puts a panic in the Republican Party sufficient to cause them to advise David Vitter to leave office, then we may consider suggesting something remotely similar for Anthony Weiner.
    Didn’t John Ensign get to continue legislating, or blocking legislation, for years after his sex/patronage scandal surfaced?
    Meanwhile, Democrats have plenty else on which to win 2012 and should be ashamed of their behavior. Based on what we know, it’s like capital punishment for stealing a bicycle, so– is there something Dems aren’t telling us, or is that it?

  4. This seeking treatment thing was such a weenie move to end all weenie moves, he should be more embarrassed about that than even the rest of it. There is no treatment for being a smarmy perv. Smarmy pervs can be good politicians, but cowards aren’t useful to anyone and I”m sure the good people of your district can find someone with bigger and less cleanly shaved balls to represent them.

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