Andrew McCullough's Blog

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Another "Family Values" debacle

January 17, 2010

I have not blogged in this new year and decade. Thanks to those who follow me when I do so. Today I am in Omaha, Nebraska on business, and I will not write at great length. The big political story to come out of Utah this weekend, however, deserves some comment. Another champion of family values, Senator Sheldon Killpack, has found himself enmeshed in scandal. Over the weekend, Senator Killpack, who has been particularly in the forefront of efforts to punish drunk drivers, was arrested on suspicion of a DUI. Since he would not take the intoxilizer test voluntarily, the officer obtained a warrant for a blood draw. Rather than wait for the results, Senator Killpack resigned his seat this morning, as he felt he would be a distraction in the Senate.

No, I am not writing this to crow over the demise of a political foe. I feel a sadness over this situation, perhaps in a way different than most. Several years ago an old friend of mine who had become a district court judge, was forced to resign when he entered a guilty plea to a drug offense. At the time, I thought the real tragedy was that he would no longer be on the bench, after he had likely developed a real compassion for those who were in a similar situation. Imagine a district court judge who really understood that the "war on drugs" is a mistake. What wonderful rulings we might expect to get from him.

As for Senator Killpack, imagine what kind of a leader he might have been in the legislature, after showing his own weakness. Perhaps his war on drunk drivers, resulting in increasingly harsh penalties, would be replaced by a compassion for those who have problems and can be helped, rather than punished. Wow! Another big chance missed. But just maybe, one of these days, someone in the halls of power will realize that all the punishment IS a mistake, and that there are other roads to explore. Until then, we can only hope.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Politics blogs blog search directory Politics Top Blogs