During an interview with Charlie Rose on Friday, New York Times columnist David Brooks argued that tolerating former President Bill Clinton’s behavior had a hand in creating an environment where sexual misconduct was given a pass. He then cited Republicans tolerating what President Trump and Alabama Republican Senate candidate Judge Roy Moore are accused of and argued partisanship is idolized.
Brooks stated, “[T]he uncomfortable thing for a lot of progressives, frankly, is how much did the Clinton thing create this whole environment? How much did tolerance of Bill Clinton create the environment in which the rest of this was given permission?”
He added, “I think it had an effect. I think the fact that — nobody, like, was approving Bill Clinton and some of the things he was accused of doing…but people were not saying, ‘We’re drawing the line here.’ And if you don’t draw lines in these big cases, then you don’t draw lines in the little cases in the workplace. And so, now we’re seeing — you know, we saw Republicans tolerating what Donald Trump was accused of doing, and today, we’re seeing this astounding case where Republicans in Alabama are tolerating what Judge Roy Moore is accused of doing.”
Brooks concluded, “[O]ne of the defenses from one of the Republican officials down there was, well, Joseph was with Mary, and Mary was a teenager in the Bible. It was like, ‘Are you kidding me? This is the argument you’re using?’ You know, it’s so mind-boggling. And it’s a sign of how partisanship has replaced everything else. Partisanship can blind you to morality, toward the truth. Partisanship has become the idol of our time.”
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