The Corner

Entrapment Etc

First, I think Kathryn’s emailer makes an excellent point that is buttressed by the first part of JPod’s post. If Craig didn’t know this code he would be appalled by the insinuations of this cop. Imagine if John McCain or Jim Webb were in that stall and accidentally did what Craig claims to have done by accident as well. It would take them fifteen minutes to even understand what the cop was talking about. “You think I’m what?!?!” “You’re saying I wanted to do what!?!?!” “Because I touched your #$%^*&@ foot with my foot!?”

And then McCain/Webb would become a helicopter of fists.

Craig understood entirely that he was caught and he was trying to be both indignant and reasonable. You can’t do both, which is why he’s unconvincing. Add in the fact h’s been dogged by rumors for 20 years. If he was innocently going to bathroom, he’s simply the unluckiest man in the world.

As for JP’s second point about this being “appalling” entrapment, I’m not so sure. What’s the Minneapolis P.D. supposed to do? All they’re looking to do is stop random men from using a public men’s room at their airport as a den of iniquity. The cop basically just wants to hand out tickets until men stop playing these games in the men’s room. It bothers me not one bit that the authorities are trying to put a stop to it (nor would I object if this was happening with heterosexual trysts, but such stuff doesn’t happen outside the letters to Penthouse Forum). The problem with Craig’s case is that the punishment seems like it doesn’t fit the crime. The public humiliation is enormous, his career ruined. It’s tragic. But then again, he knew what he was doing and he enjoyed the privileges of the office so he should endure the risks. Moreover, this speaks to the problems of being a closeted gay guy, not to the problem of cops trying to put down such humdingery in public restrooms.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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