Governor Christie – No Gentleman

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Disclosure

Out In Jersey Senior Editor Toby Graceeditorial.

The death of manners has often been lamented. Apparently it is a process that has taken a long time – longer even than the death of my Great Aunt Winifred, which, according to her frequent protestations that “I won’t last much longer you know,” along with her ever-changing litany of ills and complaints, took about 40 years. Plato complained of the ill-mannered youth of Athens. Juvenal satirized the manners of Rome. Jonathan Swift made fun of the pompous and arrogant public figures of his day. 

Our Governor Christie then, is not a new phenomenon in his seemingly endless quest to remove even the merest hint of decent manners from the political process. That he is arrogant, insensitive and domineering is hardly news. His ponderous bulk forms an ideal vehicle for his charging-bull personality. Recently however, he sank to a new low even for a man as crude and ill-bred as our governor.

Governor Chris Christie

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie

At a recent press conference Christie exploded on the subject of pension reform and launched a vicious attack on Senator Loretta Weinberg, one of the longest serving and most distinguished of our legislators. That Senator Weinberg is a Democrat, a long time supporter of LGBT rights and a strong advocate for women’s rights and well-being, of course puts her in the opposite camp from Christie. The governor would clearly prefer a world run entirely by rich, white men in which women know their place and gays do not exist.

Christie’s new low went well beyond these well-known preferences. He called for someone to “take a bat” to Senator Weinberg. Call me old fashioned but I was raised to believe gentlemen did not talk that way about ladies – or anyone else for that matter. His spokesperson subsequently poo-pooed the comment, essentially claiming it was merely a figure of speech. Yes, right – that’s what King Henry II said after his famous remark “will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?” led to the murder of St. Thomas a’Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury. Words like arrows once flung into the air, cannot be recalled. They take on a life of their own.

The particular choice of terminology regarding someone like Senator Weinberg who has devoted so much of her career to helping battered and abused women seems especially serendipitous in the most negative way. Has the governor thought better of his offensive outburst and apologized? Ha! Why should he apologize when our governor is always right?  If you don’t believe that, just ask him and he will confirm the magnificent totality of his error-free intellect.

We are left with but two hopes: first, we most earnestly hope there are no low-lifes around who will take his comment seriously, as there were in King Henry’s entourage, and second, we hope Christie is not so entirely deluded as to think he is a gentleman – because he most certainly is not.

 

Out In Jersey Senior Editor Toby Graceeditorial.

The death of manners has often been lamented. Apparently it is a process that has taken a long time – longer even than the death of my Great Aunt Winifred, which, according to her frequent protestations that “I won’t last much longer you know,” along with her ever-changing litany of ills and complaints, took about 40 years. Plato complained of the ill-mannered youth of Athens. Juvenal satirized the manners of Rome. Jonathan Swift made fun of the pompous and arrogant public figures of his day.