Paul: Enough with the Willamette Week Expose’s!



So, I am definately disappointed in Sam Adams for this “scandal”, but I am also very annoyed by the fact that Willammette Week felt compelled to run it. Who benefits from this story being dragged out and publicized? Certainly not Adams or Breedlove, and definately not the people of Portland. You can read that big expose here . The way I see it, only two people benefited from this being brought into the open:  Merkle, who dated Breedlove himself and obviously had some personal reason for wanting to drag this out, and the story’s writer, Nigel Jaquiss.

Jaquiss won a Pulitzer for his 2005 expose on former Governor Goldschmidt, but that situation was different in key ways. Goldschmidt slept with the babysitter, who was actually underage. And he was married at the time. Adams did nothing illegal, he was recently single, and did not have any professional relationship with Breedlove – so nothing unethical occurred either. It sounds like it was Breedlove and not Adams who initiated the relationship anyway. And as big a mistake as Adams made I have zero doubt in my mind that he would not have broken the law. The age difference is creepy, but they were two consenting adults. I think it is important to ask people you hear demanding Adams resign whether they would be so quick to come to that conclusion if this were a heterosexual relationship.

I think it is disappoiting when any politician does shit like this, but am especially saddened by this because it’s a definate setback for gay people in politics. If you can’t control yourself, that’s fine. It doesn’t make you a bad person or anything, but it does sort of imply you not be public servant material.

I guess I just wish we lived in a world where the press didn’t feel the need to break this story because it’s clearly a losing situation for all involved. In the media age I guess public figures just aren’t allowed to be human. I must say I feel terrible for Breedlove that he has to deal with all of this now. He doesn’t deserve this attention and the WWeek story makes it clear how torn up he was because of the attention, not what happened between him and Adams.

 The city has a lot of challenges at the moment and Adams is the best man to head city council for the next four years, and if  this “scandal” cost him the job it will be a real tragedy.


5 Responses to “Paul: Enough with the Willamette Week Expose’s!”

  1. January 20, 2009 at 9:52 pm

    HERE! HERE! I agree 100% percent It’s a case of double standard for the LGBT community, we have to be BETTER THAN just to be considered almost as equal as. I’m sad he lied but I understand why he did and Beau Breedlove doesn’t deserve to be portrayed as a victim I am furious with the WW.

  2. 2 Bill
    January 21, 2009 at 9:41 am

    Wow…Since when is blantenly lying to the public about what should have been, and was described as, a “professional” relationship (that of a mentor, mentoree) not a big deal and not worth the public knowing. Double standard??? If this was a 42 year old straight librarian using a faux mentoring position to engage in a romantic relation with a 17 year old I would be just as outraged. “Adams also admitted that he never had a true mentoring relationship with the young man. Breedlove asked Adams for advice on being gay in the political arena, but Adams now says that was originally a pretext for meeting”- Oregonian. Plus Adams asked Breedlove to lie for him. What part of this says the public should not be interested. I think the doulbe standard is the slack you are giving Adams by both defending this crap and not even mentioning where there is an obvious public interest of not lying to voters issue here too. Good job WW, good job Oregonian.

  3. 3 The Bearded Traveler
    January 21, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    Ideally, people’s personal lives WOULD be less in the news… BUT it became a REAL story with the amount of lying Adams did, and then asking Breedlove to lie TOO. At that point, it went outside of being about sex, sexuality, or even about sexual ethics on the job or with an underling/ intern, and became a story about lying and covering-up. Do you want a mayor to avoid the several opportunities he had to tell the truth to instead lie and cover-up? It doesn’t set a good standard for his trustworthiness down the road.

    Unfortunately, and I blogged about this, Adams is a role model. Whether he signed on for it, or it’s fair or not, or it’s some form of stereotyping or not, Adams IS a poster child for what “a gay” will be like in office… so this deception lets down a lot of people.

    Adams’s explanation strikes me as a little offensive, a little too convenient- “Oh, I lied because you wouldn’t believe the truth, so I HAD to lie, so I lied, but RIGHT NOW I’m telling you The Truth- trust me!” I mean, if we accept that kind of explanation from our leaders- “I lied to protect you from your untrusting soul”- we are going to get even more lies from government (if such a thing is possible).

    Having said ALL of that, and I’m bitterly disappointed in Adams, no, I’m not saying I want him to resign or be fired, necessarily. Sadly, this is mostly because I want to still believe, against my better judgment and wisdom, that he might be telling us the truth about the age of Breedlove at such-and-such time… and I recognize that the difference between 17 and 18 years old is small, even if he is lying…. but yes, he might be lying, he’s given us room for doubt, and it should make a difference to us if he is, more on the principle of truth than age-of-consent technicalities.
    I will say that the police union people who are saying, “WE are held to a higher-than-average standard of truth than the public, and can be fired for lying about small things- why can’t the mayor be fired for a significant lie?” have a point. They have an ethical point.

  4. 4 Bill
    January 21, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    The editorial board of Just Out asked Adams to resign.

  5. January 22, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    While I have some issues with the WW piece, I do think that it would have been wrong for them not to publish the story. It is the news media’s obligation to keep the public informed, even when the consequences may be unpleasant. Portland deserves to know that a public official lied repeatedly, asked someone else to lie repeatedly, and possibly gave a reporter a job to keep her from pursuing the story. What’s really unfortunate is that other people brought Adams’ relationship with Breedlove into the public sphere in the first place.

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