Unethical Quote Of The Month: Georgia Republican Senate Candidate Herschel Walker

“You know, he without sin cast the first stone. Does my opponent believe in redemption, being a pastor? That’s what’s so funny. And I say that because I’m not gonna get into what happened with him in his past. I want him to do—what’s going on with his policy. He’s talking about something I was a part of over 15 years ago, maybe even longer.”

—Republican U.S. Senate candidate Herschel Walker, quoting Jesus from John 8:7 while ducking a question about allegations of his past domestic abuse.

Atlanta-based magazine Rolling Out asked Walker about domestic abuse allegations that occurred between 2001 and 2008. In Walker’s primary race against Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, a campaign ad posted online claimed that police reports and court records from 2001 to 2008 indicated that Walker had “a history of physically abusive and extremely threatening behavior” involving his ex-wife, Cynthia Grossman who was   married to the former NFL star from 1983 to 2002. The question is a fair one, since earlier this month, Walker released his own campaign attack ad claiming that his opponent in the Senate race, Democrat Ralph Warnock “hit his wife with his car,” was “accused of neglecting his small children” and “ran from the process server” who tried to serve him court papers.That epic duck (that’s the Epic Duck above in a Charles Addams cartoon) by Walker has to be one of the most disgraceful and indefensible answers to a legitimate question I’ve ever read or heard of:

  • That Bible quote is on the Rationalizations list. It’s an easy way to avoid taking responsibility for genuinely unethical conduct, and the context of the quote makes Walker’s use of it either disingenuous or ignorant. As the entry in the List explains, “There is a big difference between participating in the physical wounding of an individual [the woman in the story was literally about to be stoned to death] when one has been guilty of similar failings, and simply disapproving such conduct and calling for appropriate punishment. Interpreting the passage to mean that nobody can ever be punished or admonished for ethical misconduct except by the ethically pure is simply a cynical justification for a universal lack of accountability and responsibility.”
  • Walker’s campaign, as lawyers say, “opened the door.” How dare he use that quote when he started throwing the metaphorical domestic abuse stones?
  • Does Walker know what redemption is? Redemption at very least requires the sinner to admit the sin and accept responsibility for it. Ducking the issue and shifting the focus onto the accuser is not a path to redemption
  • “And I say that because I’m not gonna get into what happened with him in his past.” Ugh. The slimiest, most cowardly, most dishonest way to make an accusation there is: “And I certainly am not going to mention my opponent’s domestic abuse (which I already issued an attack ad about!)….”
  • Then Walker shifts to the hoary “let’s talk about policy, not these personal attacks.” That was a Bill Clinton specialty. It’s a transparent and, again, cowardly deflection tactic.
  • Finally, for good measure, Walker resorts to another rationalization, #52. The Underwood Maneuver, or “That’s in the past.”

How can anyone in good conscience vote for this guy, so matter who he’s running against? He’s a fake, he is unqualified, he’s bluffing and tap-dancing through the campaign, and he appears to be completely shameless about it. And control of the Senate may hinge on this guy winning a race for a job he’s so unfit for he makes Joe Biden look like the epitome of a trustworthy public servant by comparison! ( Today the President asked if Rep. Jackie Walorski, who died last month, was present at a White House food insecurity conference.)

7 thoughts on “Unethical Quote Of The Month: Georgia Republican Senate Candidate Herschel Walker

  1. “How can anyone in good conscience vote for this guy, so matter who he’s running against?”
    Because the fate of the country is at stake.

    “He’s a fake, he is unqualified, he’s bluffing and tap-dancing through the campaign, and he appears to be completely shameless about it.”
    You are describing most politicians and remove those characteristics and many ballots would be empty.

    “a job he’s so unfit for he makes Joe Biden look like the epitome of a trustworthy public servant by comparison!”
    A bit of an exaggeration.

  2. … Redemption at very least requires the sinner to admit the sin and accept responsibility for it…

    I think that’s a misunderstanding. It does not “require” that, either chronologically beforehand or as a precondition. Rather, redemption leads to that as part of later behaviour, when it is not rejected (if it is rejected, then of course there is no redemption, and not repenting is just precisely what rejection is). If that were not so, “go and sin no more” would not make sense as a statement coming after what led up to it; it would have had to precede the saving to “work” (and it also does not make sense to think of the sinner doing something to work his redemption).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.