Friday, May 19, 2006

Giuliani Proves Shakespeare Wrong

Rudy Giuliani, in a campaign speech for Ralph Reed, declared heterosexual marriage to be "inviolate." Oy, vey. Where to begin?

First: As the
Times notes, Giuliani was finessing his long-standing support for gay civil unions. One has to assume that Reed's conservative supporters will see through this pretty quickly. And in a just world, support for Reed would alienate Giuliani's own moderate base.

Second: Giuliani is selling his soul by supporting Reed's homophobic Christianist campaign in Georgia. No surprise there; as we ramp up for the '08 Presidential campaign, souls are going for cheap. Anybody remember McCain's little visit to Liberty U.?

But here's where the rubber hits the road, people --

Third: Inviolate? What does this guy know about keeping marriage inviolate? Let's review.

(a) Giuliani's first marriage was to his second cousin, Regina Peruggi. Under canon law, this is grounds for an annullment, which he sought and received. Not right away, mind you, but after fourteen years together. Fourteen years. And -- key concept here -- he "learned" about the blood relationship and got the annullment while he was in the middle of an adulterous affair with TV personality Donna Hanover, whom he later married.

(b) Giuliani's second marriage, to Ms. Hanover, was an ugly thing. During his tenure as Mayor of New York, he was generally believed to be engaged in an affair with one of his subordinates, press secretary Crystyne Lategano, who later got a plum political appointment. They denied it all, to be sure, but nobody believed them. So there -- if the speculation is true -- we have adultery coupled with abuse of power coupled with nepotism and topped with an icing of lies.

(c) Even if the first affair isn't certain, the second is. While still married to Hanover, and still mayor, Giuliani started sleeping with Judith Nathan. (They marched in the St. Patrick's Day Parade together, for crying out loud -- the way normal mayors usually do with their wives. Oh, and he later married her.) Giuliani and Hanover had an ugly, public squabble over who could live in Gracie Mansion -- and of course, their kids got caught in the middle. In the divorce proceedings, he accused her of "cruel and inhuman treatment," while she accused him of "open and notorious adultery." Which argument was more convincing? Well, she gets a million dollars a year in alimony.

So. Rudy Giuliani is a serial adulterer, a liar, a man who doesn't mind dragging his kids through the mud that he creates with his disdain for marriage vows. And, since Rome won't annull his second marriage, he is also presumably unwelcome to receive communion in his own church.

So maybe this guy should keep his big mouth shut on the subject of making marriage "inviolate." In any case, his speech in Georgia proves that Shakespeare is wrong -- conscience doth NOT make cowards of us all. Or does that only work if you have a conscience?

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