Tuesday Tussle: What Is The Big Deal About The Petraeus Affair?
1:30 pm, November 13th | by Sarah Devlin
Sarah: So, the Petraeus scandal keeps getting crazier and crazier. You saw that another general is involved now, right?
Laura: YEAH. What a mess. What is WITH PEOPLE?
Sarah: So here are my two questions about it:
1. Do you feel like the women are being treated more harshly by the media?
2. Do you think that people are right to be so upset?
Laura: 1. Absolutely. I mean, the thing that bothers me is that everyone keeps mentioning that Broadwell was Homecoming Queen. This is a woman who did NOT PEAK IN HIGH SCHOOL, guys. She’s done so much else since then, and she’s being framed as a psycho femme fatale. One article compared her to Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction.
Laura: She has definitely been treated terribly!
2: I can’t really say. On the one hand, it’s their personal business. On the other, apparently it’s a security breach.
Sarah: Yeah. I mean, I’m one of those people who doesn’t really care if politicians/generals/political appointees have messy personal lives, as long as they don’t build their careers on being “virtuous”/tearing other people down for not being as virtuous as they are. But at the same time — I don’t really know if it was a security breach, but at the very least all that sneaking around must make it harder to do your job!
And apparently there were threatening emails involved.
And shirtless photos.
Lots of weirdness.
Sarah: It’s definitely embarrassing.
Sarah: But the treatment of Broadwell is awful!
Laura: The worst.
Sarah: Even though it sounds like she went a leeeetle nuts. Sending threatening emails to your boyfriend’s OTHER mistress? Look at your life, look at your choices.
Laura: That’s what we’re hearing, at least. That’s another issue — she assumed she was the only mistress. Nevermind that she’s with a married man who’s carrying on an affair with her. She wanted to believe she was special.
Sarah: Yeah, but if you have an affair you’re already not thinking clearly. So that’s understandable to me.
Laura: Yeah, that’s true.
Sarah: The thing that bothers me is that I think Petraeus will probably be fine. He’ll get a consulting job or something. I can’t see Broadwell ever coming back from this. Is that fair?
Laura: It’s not! That’s the problem here. She will always be remembered as ‘the Other Woman,’ not the hyperachieving West Point grad or author. Just ‘the mistress.’
Sarah: It’s so depressing! And yet another reminder not to have affairs with your coworkers.
Laura: Haha, this will stop no one.
Sarah: The power imbalance was never in her favor.
Laura: Makes you wonder whether she knew this could happen.
Sarah: What do you mean?
Laura: Did she ever think this could happen, or that they could keep it a secret forever?
Sarah: I think when you get in that situation you’re just not thinking clearly, so you probably don’t think anyone will find out, even though someone always, ALWAYS finds out. How hilarious is it that this all happened over Gmail? Even the CIA director and his mistress use Gmail. It’s the great equalizer.
Laura: Hahahaa. Yeah, Gmail is universal. What else would they use? Just goes to show, no matter how powerful or successful you are, you can still go crazy over love (or lust).
Sarah: What do you think the punishment should be for both of them? What seems fair to you?
Laura: Haha, “PUNISHMENT.”
Well, I think he made a good call resigning. I think she should probably lay low for a while, especially if she’s as loose of a cannon as we’ve heard, because she needs to get a hold of her emotions. Even so, I feel bad for her. As you said, she wasn’t thinking rationally. She did an emotionally charged thing.
Sarah: Yeah at it’s core this is just super embarrassing. That’s probably punishment enough.
If you were her publisher, would you pull her book? Or would you be psyched because it’ll probably sell way better now? :)
Laura: No, I wouldn’t. I am sure sales will skyrocket, and if theyre good businesspeople they won’t pull it.
Sarah: Yeah…but should they maybe add something in the introduction? “By the way, they were banging”?
People already know.
[Photo via ABC News]