At this exact moment, I believe this is still "my" Congresscritter: Marky-Mark Souder. Tomorrow, probably not.
His crimes are many. First elected in the 1994 Republican Revolution (ha!), he promised to self-term-limit. He lied, of course. No one was a bigger Drug Warrior -- thanks a lot, Mark, I guess I didn't need that old Fourth Amendment anyway. He explained to us all that since he was such a Conservative Christian™, it was Israel über alles; you'd have thought he held a seat-for-life in the Knesset, not the Congress. (Given the power of the Lobby, maybe he did.) The corporate bailouts? Souder was fully on-board; after all, there's a Chevy truck plant in the 3rd district. TARP? Marky assured us all that the "assets" were worth 95 cents on the dollar, easy. And what a guy for taking care of the People's Truly Pressing Business! Thanks to Souder's efforts, Interstate 469 is now officially known as the "Ronald Reagan Expressway," complete with several costly signs saying so.
But I must admit that the very first thing that comes to my mind, when I hear the name of my Congressional representation, is the Global War on Terror. Yes, indeed, a stauncher warrior -- in the modern American mode, you understand -- could not be imagined. Mr. Souder, an official conscientious objector during the Vietnam war, in which he had the personal opportunity to defend the beaches of Southern California from the Red Gook Menace, did not allow consistency -- that hobgoblin of small minds -- to cramp his style. Surely no one this side of Darth Cheney lusted more fiercely after the blood of any (and every) Ay-rab than Mark the Armchair Destroyer.
Anyway, it seems entirely inappropriate that Mark Souder's crime career should be ended by a relatively humble sin of the flesh. The guy announced his resignation today, his voice choked with self-pitying tears; now that he was finally convinced that he could cover up his pecadillo no more, he was indeed sorry to have been caught, and to have his fangs pried loose forever from the bloodstream of worldly power. What should scandalize people is mass murder by proxy; what in fact dooms Marky is adultery. Wrong? Sure. Sinful? Absolutely. But in the mundane order of this world, you'd think that the needless, criminal slaughter of hundreds of thousands of people would be what would vex us. Tragically, you'd be mistaken.
Various folk around here have expressed their kind thoughts about Mr. Souder's family, as well as the staffer and her family. I don't disagree with the sentiment. But I think I'll have to reserve my tender thoughts for this girl and her family. To me, this is what Souder, and all but a very, very few in Washington, have to answer for. If the soon-to-be-former Congressman wants to repent of his sins against God and his fellow man, here's where he might profitably start.