As long as we’re talking about shame and shamelessness, let’s talk about former House Speaker and future con Denny Hastert —
The sex abuse victim who testified against Dennis Hastert at the former U.S. House speaker’s sentencing hearing said he ultimately decided to do so publicly after Hastert reached out to his brother for a letter of support asking the judge for leniency.
Scott Cross, a 53-year-old businessman who lives in the Chicago suburbs, was on the Yorkville High School wrestling team that Hastert coached in the 1970s. Struggling to hold back tears on Wednesday, Cross walked the courtroom through a chilling account of the abuse and the way the man he trusted fondled him on a locker room table.
Cross’ brother is former Illinois House Republican leader Tom Cross, a one-time political protégé of Hastert’s. —NYTimes
Got that? The child abuser asked his victim’s brother for a letter of support. Can you get any more shameless than that? Then again, plenty of high-profile players — our leaders, public servants one and all — stepped up to the plate for their fallen colleague.
Before the hearing, a long list of supporters — from Mr. Hastert’s wife, Jean, to Tom DeLay, the former House majority leader — had sent letters to Judge Durkin. “He doesn’t deserve what he is going through,” Mr. DeLay wrote. [via]
“He doesn’t deserve it.” Surely Tom “The Hammer” Delay and his crowd actually believe that, too. Inebriated with power and surrounded by cowering sycophants who bow and scrape before them, dedicated to ingratiating themselves in their own self interest, these people of lofty privilege operate in a zone so removed from ordinary life and common decency they’re but marginally human. They have no more shame before the general public that you do standing naked in front of your parakeet.
It’s how they can lie, cheat, and steal on a daily basis while pontificating about the nation’s responsibilities, obligations, and morals without gagging, let alone turning to stone. By the time they’ve achieved these lofty heights of degradation, they no longer possess a soul to sell — it’s long gone — now they’re just out to protect the assy flesh that once enfolded it.
Shame? Be serious. Like taxes, that’s for the little people.
Fortunately, the trial Court ain’t having it.
Judge Thomas “The defendant is a serial child molester,” said Judge Thomas M. Durkin of Federal District Court, as Mr. Hastert sat impassively, often staring downward, hands crossed on his lap. He added, “Some actions can obliterate a lifetime of good works. Nothing is more stunning than having ‘serial child molester’ and ‘speaker of the House’ in the same sentence.”
And my favorite —
“If there’s a public shaming of the defendant because of the conduct he’s engaged in, so be it,” Judge Durkin said.
That’s a big IF, Your Honor, but we’re grateful for your even mentioning it.