I Can Forgive Andrew Gillum, But I Don’t Have to Like It
This isn’t the first time the politician has jeopardized a promising future by acting selfishly
I believe in grace, and by extension, in forgiveness. However, when it comes to former Tallahassee mayor and Florida gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum, who in mid-March was found in a compromising position in a Miami hotel room, I have struggled to forgive as swiftly as others.
That doesn’t mean I want to kick Gillum while he is down, or to further shame and pile on. I am concerned for him, and — despite how these next few hundred words may sound — feel deeply bad for him. I genuinely hope he finds some sense of peace, and if he so desires, finds a way to rebuild his political career.
Nevertheless, when I think of what he has been accused of and with whom, I’m still stuck on how a man who was on the rumored short-list for vice president in 2020 could have (allegedly) behaved so recklessly. No, not recklessly: fucking stupidly. How can someone at his age at this stage in his career be (allegedly) acting so damn goofy?
The details being what they were, some outlets were always going to dive in with glee, and the despicable Daily Mail led the way. Perhaps more than its lurid story, it was the photos — the “[p]lastic baggies of suspected crystal meth, empty beer bottles and prescription pills…seen scattered among trash and soiled bedding,” as the paper breathlessly described — that were so utterly unnecessary. Before Gillum is a political hopeful, a former mayor, a CNN political analyst, he is a person; a person with a spouse and children.
Those facts also seemed to be lost on Candace Owens, who — disappointingly, if not surprisingly — obtained Gillum’s police report and shared it with her 2 million Twitter followers. And on blogger Jacob Engels, who first published the unverified photo of a man believed to be Gillum passed out on the ground near his own vomit. That isn’t just cruel, it’s debasing.
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