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Two big hits on prominant families this week.

Mr. Shawshank

One is Morgan Freeman.  You may recall he was in an automobile accident earlier this week and was in serious condition.  He was released later in the week after surgery with shoulder damage and a broken arm and elbow.  According to Fox News, Freeman and his wife Myrna Colley-Lee have been separated since last December.

As far as I know, this was a huge surpise to most of the world.  Of course, being in an accident with a lady friend in the car can lead to speculation, but I don’t anyone was ready to start accusing Freeman of infidelity.  It seems she was a friend that had simply offered him a ride home.

I’m guessing the biggest reason for the divorce disclosure now is the fact someone might be asking why his wife isn’t taking care of him.

Mr. Perfect

John Edwards admitted this week that he had been in an adulterous relationship with Rielle Hunter in 2006.  The tone of his apology to the general public (since he has already apologized to his wife some time ago) was politically wordsmithed to convey a sense that the issue of adultery was trivial and that his primary sin (though he never uses that word, rather he uses the word “choice”) was not having an affair, it was in not revealing it to the public earlier… denying it in fact because he thought the inaccuracies in the report by the National Enquirer made it deniable.

It will be interesting to see whether Edwards can recover from this politically.  Obviously, he has recovered from the family impacts since his wife has publicaly forgiven him.  Ed Morrissey at Hot Air provides an excellent analysis of where Edwards can go from here.

This item from Death By A Thousand Paperclips in December of last year is interesting to view in light of this week’s revelation.

My thoughts on Captain Ed’s commentary: What is revealing about Edwards is an almost blatant disregard for integrity and trust.  The reason most politicians conceal improprieties of this nature is that the public simply doesn’t like to elect people that would do something as bad as cheating on their wife.  On the positive side, the public is becoming generally less concerned about marital infidelity on its face because we understand that all of us have failings.

On the negative side, the public is becoming more and more tolerant of those failing in solemn commitments and tolerating, or just looking blindly at, people who have given a vow to another and have broken it, many of them repeatedly.  The public does this without considering what that means to the public trust.  The same thing happened with Bill Clinton, and even today many just giggle about the licentious behavior of Jack and Ted Kennedy and continue to diefy both of them despite evidence to the contrary.  in 8 years, I’d bet Gary Hart, Jonathan Edwards, maybe even Hugh Hefner could all become President.

The mark of confusion comes in this regard: skills and character are two different things.  Skills are things you learn how to do, and can do effectively outside the realm of integrity.  Skills can be easily measured and agreed upon.  Character is is about how you use your skills, what choices you will make, how far people can trust you to do the right thing.

One can be taught how execute on the right thing.  A lifetime is spent becoming the person who knows what the right thing is and when to do it.

Hat Tips to Real Clear Politics, Death By A Thousand Paperclips, Hot Air, and Daily Kos.

Update: Mispelling.

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