A couple of years ago, I ran into Alderman Roger Wilson in the audience at a Frederick County Council meeting. He noticed my Virginia Commonwealth University logo shirt and explained that he attended that Richmond, Virginia, school, too.

He was there in his role at the time as the director of government affairs and public policy for the county. The exchange was pleasant enough but mostly unremarkable.

Fast forward two years and now Alderman Wilson finds himself in political turmoil for what he terms “flirting” and an independent investigation calls “unwelcomed sexual advances.”

I do not know if the charges against Alderman Wilson warrant his expulsion from the city council. I do know, however, that we must demand his resignation from the council. Not because he necessarily did anything wrong, but because he should be ashamed of his lack of judgement and self-control when he should have known better.

Politicians must know, even in a small town, the spotlight is always on them. When they accept public office, their lives to a large extent become public, too. Shame used to a powerful motivator but now, unfortunately, it seems to be a quaint relic of the past. Now, politicians only leave if they have no other choice, kicking and screaming political hit job as they go.

See Anthony Weiner, Dennis Hastert, Tim Murphy, John Conyers and now, possibly, Florida republican Matt Gaetz. As a lifelong Democrat, I applaud the many Democrats and the Frederick County Democratic State Central Committee who are calling for Mr. Wilson to resign. Mr. Wilson may indeed be innocent of any serious wrongdoing, but that doesn’t mean he is entitled to be a public figure.

Serving in office should be a temporary honor, not a long-term career goal. Just as with Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) of New York, we must expect a higher standard of behavior from our leaders, not just enough to stay out of jail. We should demand better.

(38) comments

Plumbum

”If I go to work in a mini squirt am I giving you the right to flirt?”

- lyrics from Debra Cox

Awteam2021

The report on the Frederick City website statement from the investigation to examine allegations of misbehavior by Alderman Roger Wilson.

The report states:

“I find there is sufficient evidence to conclude that Alderman Wilson relied on his position as an Alderman to gain the acquaintance and trust of women in the community. He then used a pretense of helping these women as an opportunity to request that they engage in sexual relationships with him. The two witnesses mentioned above reported that he so approached them during his term as an Alderman.

Although Mr. Wilson may have used his public official persona to meet these women, his propositions to them are fairly characterized as private conduct. There was no employment relationship involved and no indication that he was demanding sexual favors in exchange for some benefit that he had control over. He did not and could not have created a hostile work environment based on sexual harassment, as there was no employment relationship and no reports of repeated and pervasive conduct as to each individual. The complainants did not suffer legally compensable damages. Accordingly, Mr. Wilson’s conduct does not constitute legally actionable sexual harassment under State or federal law.”

So, where’s the sufficient evidence? Also you state “find” but later state in the same report “may have”.🤷‍♂️

What’s up with that? Isn’t the question - whether he did or didn’t, not “may have” use his office. And what did he do? Just say what the women said he did and put this whole matter to rest.

mrnatural1

Because once again there was no [+ Add Reply] button below... (Ogden wants $169 per year for this?)

On May 21, 2021@ 4:56pm threecents wrote:

~

"Mrnatural1, I have heard about that Metro culture, and you are sadly mistaken if you think all your female coworkers at Metro were all OK with that. I heard those who were not either quit or were denied advancement."

~

Seriously?!

Please point out where I said, "... all [my] female coworkers at Metro were all OK with that." I'll wait.

Can't find it? That's because I didn't say it -- and I don't appreciate you insinuating that I have that opinion. Why would you suggest that? In the years I've been posting here, have I ever once written anything that would cause you to believe I think that way?

In fact, when discussing the 'cultural differences' at Metro with my wife and others over the years I've often said that while it might have appeared that a great time was being had by all, I'm sure there were female (and perhaps some male) employees who "went along to get along".

The point of my comment was and is that, quote: "Social norms vary by age/generation; geographic area; socio-economic status, religion, and race/culture." My mention of my observations at Metro was a personal example of that, nothing more.

threecents

Sorry I misinterpreted your thoughts, but in answer to your question, these are your words: "My coworkers just had a different culture. Personally, I found it more enjoyable than more typical 'uptight' workplaces."

threecents

Also, You are mistaken: I did not say you said all your female coworker were OK with that.

threecents

Situations like these make me glad that we use pseudonyms. I do apologize for drawing wrong conclusions.

veritas

... for moral miscreants is to deny, deny, deny then dummy up and refuse to resign or even continue to dispute the "charges." And it seems to work quite well. Just ask Andrew Cuomo, Ralph Northam, Justin Fairfax, Donald Trump, et al.

Awteam2021

I didn’t know Ralph Northam was accused of sexual misconduct. I thought he was guilty of bad racist humor. I do know someone’s DNA has been ordered by the courts. Are you saying all transgressions are equal? As severe? You probably disagree but I think one bragging about putting their hand up someone’s pu **y, 20 women accusing him of sexual assault, paying for sex when his third wife is home with their new born child, is way harsher then sexual innuendos, saying distasteful jokes, bad Break up with girlfriend, or hitting on Interns, all bad but not equal.

veritas

You've turned missing the point into an art form. [beam]

PurplePickles aka L&M

I was going to have Veritas define what they meant by moral miscreants, but I think you have nailed it Awteam2021! How about it Veritas you agree? LOL

phydeaux994

Ralph Northam was not accused of sexual misconduct, it was his Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax. Northam was accused of Racism in his College days.

veritas

Resigning from political office under a cloud of moral turpitude is not just passé, it's a completely discredited response in today's increasingly amoral society. The new, hip strategy for

phydeaux994

I don’t know if one could be more guilty of sexual misconduct than John Kennedy. Today’s society is probably less guilty of the crime because the women are coming forward to accuse their abusers, as we are seeing in the Roger Wilson case. But sexual predators are common among men in power positions, always have been. Nothing to do with today’s Society, men have always been this way.

Awteam2021

A US House GOP candidate in Wyoming, a staunch Trump supporter, admits he impregnated a 14 y/o when he was 18. Later married and divorced. Anthony Bouchard is Liz Cheney’s primary opponent. The young lady later committed suicide. Anthony revealed this on all places, “Facebook”. “She was a little younger than me, so it’s like the Romeo and Juliet story.” 🤷‍♂️

Dwasserba

I read the report and it didn’t end it because these days we need “proof” before anyone just drops it and fades away with a cloud over their head. What does proof entail. Well, apparently there is no hope of getting it. So this will be a zombie topic that just won’t die, like the hotel.

Awteam2021

I’ve only seen reports of the report. Did the report specify what he said or did? At this point, Roger should demand release of the report. What does he have to lose?

petersamuel

The report is there on the City website. It says nothing more than was reported but at huge length: several women accuse him of having made unwelcome sexual advances, and none of them want to be identified. The report adds nothing to what we knew from Ald MacShane's original charges.

Plumbum

And what exactly is “flirting” in today’s society?

Is flirting a criminal act?

Is flirting unethical?

Is there more than one form of flirting?

Is flirting a part of today’s socializing?

PurplePickles aka L&M

Not because he necessarily did anything wrong, but because he should be ashamed of his lack of judgement and self-control when he should have known better....the same exact thing should be thought and said of O'Connor, MacShane and the FNP, they didn't necessarily do anything wrong (what they did was so much worse, you know destroy a man's political career with a slander campaign on Facebook and the FNP) but they should be ashamed of themselves for their lack of judgement and self-control when they should have known better than to exploit alleged victims for political gain.

So Mr.Wilson should resign because he should be ashamed? So the POC should be ashamed and resign but not the NPOC? Nope... It should be everyone resigns and FNP issues an apology to Mr. Wilson or no one resigns.....and the FNP stops printing anything at all having to do with Mr. Wilson's smear campaign even LTE's. I thought the other Mr.Wilson was going to stop being played..? Guess not

Plumbum

Totally agree.

Wilson has hired one of frederick’s super lawyers. HE HAS RETAINED COUNSEL.

He’s coming after the Ogden’s.

He’s coming after McShame. And that pip-squeak mayor, coming after him, too.

PurplePickles aka L&M

I can't wait for the day I read that in the FNP....bittersweet justice.

Plumbum

I equate this to the highschool boys from Kentucky that came to visits our nations Capital. The media smeared them so bad because they had on red MAGA shirts. Sued a couple media outlets. And won.

Very similar here with WilsonGate

mrnatural1

Good.

threecents

This cancel culture preoccupation with politicians personal lives has never been stronger. The letter writer basically says he doesn't know if Wilson did anything wrong, but he should resign. I agree this is definitely a teachable moment, but lets not ruin someone's career and reputation if we are not sure he did anything wrong. And whether or not he is a "career politician" has nothing to do with that.

mrnatural1

[thumbup] threecents

Awteam2021

“ The exchange was pleasant enough but mostly unremarkable.” Who says that? What were looking for? A marriage proposal?

Plumbum

Excellent response

Dwasserba

I’m guessing... he wasn’t hit on

PurplePickles aka L&M

Yeah I don't imagine PDL gets hit on that often.

mrnatural1

[cool] Awteam

Plumbum

Gabs was a flirtin with me big time last evening. You didn’t see me gettin all upset. It’s nice to know she loves me

threecents

Oh. Ohh. Ohhh.

Plumbum

BTW if anyone wants to flirt with me here in the comments feel free to anytime!

Plumbum

I don’t agree. This is 2021 not the I love Lucy era. People flirt. People enjoy it.

Awteam2021

More like 16th century puritans, burn him at the stake!🔥

Dwasserba

I think the problem is differing standards...we have no one “page” we all share. Like if I say I am years-old, I have friends who always jump on that, because they’re not, they are years-young! There are husbands of decades and now senior, still guarding wives from being swept off their feet by randos even as the odds go down and down. Some observers find this “cute,” I don’t. Or flipside. Look at Pence’s behavior. He’s so attractive he can’t trust himself to have even a working lunch with any unrelated female. Any. They’ll be devastated if they can’t seduce him and he’s too much the gentleman to resist them for long. 🙄 By contrast, teenaged Japanese tourist girls en masse dragged off my hus in China to take photos with him like he was a movie star. 2006, still a natural blond w blue eyes. It went on quite some time. Others in our group, bemused/surprised, what did they do. They asked me, “Does this bother you.” Uhhh unlike you (clearly) I *do* see him “that way.” 🤔 Were they writing their phone numbers on his arms, no. Can I tell he still appeals one/one sometimes, yeah. Are they flirting or just being nice and who-is-thinking-what when I think I see it...Welp. Shrugging works for me. So far no formal complaints and we don’t either.

mrnatural1

Quote:

"I think the problem is differing standards...we have no one “page” we all share."

Good observation Dwasserba. Social norms vary by age/generation; geographic area; socio-economic status, religion, and race/culture.

How people speak and interact in a small town bar in WV is completely different from how people speak at a country club in Montgomery County.

I worked for Metro for over 27 years. The way the male and female train operators acted around each other -- sitting on each other's laps; kissing; hugging; making suggestive/crude comments; slaps on the rear end -- would result in a flurry of lawsuits and firings in most workplaces. My coworkers just had a different culture. Personally, I found it more enjoyable than more typical 'uptight' workplaces, but it would clearly not fly in most business settings.

That said, most people are aware that other groups of people have different standards and modify their behavior accordingly. Still, that could be a factor in this case. I'm reminded of Joe Biden's shoulder rubs and hair sniffing. He only intended to be warm and friendly -- but what as "warm and friendly" to him made some other people uncomfortable. Apparently no one said anything to him but when he finally was made aware, he stopped.

Perhaps the same is true of Mr. Wilson. Maybe no one ever explained to him that what he considers friendly, harmless, 'flirting' is interpreted differently by different groups of women. Perhaps some truly don't mind, or even find it flattering, but others clearly do not.

threecents

Mrnatural1, I have heard about that Metro culture, and you are sadly mistaken if you think all your female coworkers at Metro were all OK with that. I heard those who were not either quit or were denied advancement.

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