Skip to comments.David Scondras: Democratic Answer to Mark Foley?
Posted on 10/12/2006 6:53:13 AM PDT by seanrobins
The always pertinent and to-the-point Sweetness & Light, has brought to our attention the case of David Scondras, an ex-City Councilor from Boston, who was arrested in an Internet sex sting early yesterday morning, when he went to meet a "15-year-old boy" with whom he had spoken "online."
Scondras' first problem (well, second. . .eh, third. . .or. . .) - his most immediate problem was that the boy was actually a Lawrence, Massachusetts police officer:
According to CBS-4 in Boston, this is what happened:
Fmr. Boston Councilor Busted In Internet Sex Sting
Oct 10, 2006 12:13 pm US/Eastern
(CBS4) BOSTON Former Boston city councilor David Scondras is facing charges for attempting to lure a teenage boy over the internet.
Lawrence Police arrested Scondras at about 1:15 a.m. Monday. Investigators said a sergeant pretending to be a 15-year-old boy had several sexually explicit email exchanges with Scondras.
Officers arrested Scondras at a location where he thought he was going to meet the boy.
The 60-year-old Scondras pleaded not guilty Tuesday to several charges including enticement of a child under the age of 16 and assault and battery on a police officer. He's being held on $1500 cash bail and is due back in court in November.
Scondras served on the city council from 1983-1993. He was the city's first openly-gay councilor. Scondras also founded the non-profit organization, Search For A Cure.
Scondras was arrested in 1996 after a teenager accused him of sexual assault in a Boston movie theatre. The charges were eventually dropped.
Sweetness & Light points out aptly enough that no where in the article, is this ex-City Councilor, this Boston politico, this gay politician, arrested for attempting to entice a young boy over the Internet - ever identified as being a Democrat.
For those of you who have never heard of Barney Franks, or Gerry Studds, or a number of others: The pursuit of young boys by gay politicians is not just for Republicans, such as Mark Foley.
While researching to confirm Mr. Scondras' "Democratic-ness" - I came across something far more interesting than this very predictible bit of mainstream media bias.
Mr. Scondras has an interesting past. In September, 1996 he was arrested and charged - although the charges were eventually dropped - with sexual assault upon a 16-year-old boy, whom he was accused of having groped in a movie theater, across the street from the hotel in which they met.
In the early days of the story, it was covered in a piece written by Michael Bronski, a gay local writer - who has written extensively on a multitude of gay issues, and is widely published. In his account in the Boston Phoenix, Bronski paints a picture that in many ways, is startlingly similar to the direction that the Democratic nut-jobs and their mainstream media devotees, are driving the Mark Foley story.
With Foley, Democrats have pushed sooo hard at Dennis Hastert for allegedly not having done enough about the innocuous e-mails - long before anything else was known - that they are creating a "response" standard that requires a heightened scrutiny of gay elected officials when any issue arises which relates to a young boy. In other words, Democrats, in their zest and zeal to attack and destroy Hastert (as a predicate, they believe, to making inroads in the upcoming elections), they are plowing under a major consitituency: Liberal gays and lesbians.
Here's what Bronski had to say in September, 1996:
The news that former Boston city councilor David Scondras had been brutally beaten by a young man accusing him of, shall we say, indelicate behavior in a movie theater shocked much of Boston's gay community and has exposed some surprising divisions within it.
Part of the problem with discussing the Scondras story is that no one knows what happened. Scondras himself has yet to make a public statement; most of the information we have comes from the report of the young man's father. This is what we know so far: Scondras met the 16-year-old in the lobby of the Sheraton Boston and offered to get him into a film at the Cheri Theater across the street. The young man accepted. Some time later, after Scondras either told the young man he was gay or groped him (depending on whom you believe), the young man punched Scondras, who fled into the lobby. The boy followed and continued to hit Scondras, kicking him in the head and torso when Scondras fell to the ground. The beating was stopped by the Cheri's security officials, who called the police. Scondras drove himself to Beth Israel Hospital, where he was treated for multiple hematomas on his abdomen, injured kidneys, a broken nose that was impacted into his cranial cavity, a skull fracture, and a jaw broken in three places.
A probable-cause hearing, to assess whether there is enough evidence to charge Scondras with sexual assault, is set for October 25. Scondras has indicated that he is considering filing charges against the young man for assault and battery.
What is astonishing about the whole affair is not that the two sides are telling different stories -- of course they are -- but that the gay community can't agree on how to respond. Given the ferocity of the attack, a unanimous condemnation would seem to be in order. Yet an article in the Boston Globe -- headlined SCONDRAS CHARGES DIVIDE GAYS -- indicated that for many gay men, the real issue was not anti-gay violence but gay sexuality and the behavior of gay public figures. This was even more apparent in Bay Windows' coverage. DAVID SCONDRAS ALLEGEDLY GROPES UNWILLING 16-YEAR-OLD IN THEATER ran the headline, followed by "Former Boston city councilor counters that he is the victim of brutal bashing." Somewhere along the line, an alleged incident of sexual misconduct became more important that the reality of a brutal beating. What happened?
The implication of these stories is that Scondras brought the beating upon himself through his sexual behavior. And the sexual controversy surrounding the story is heightened by the age difference between the former city councilor and his attacker: Scondras is 50, the young man is 16. Boston City Councilor Albert "Dapper" O'Neil went so far as to denounce his former colleague as a "pedophile." But despite O'Neil's colorful language, this is not pedophilia; in Massachusetts, 16 is the legal age of consent. What is surprising is that this homophobia is being echoed throughout the gay community itself.
Rather than condemn a public gay-bashing, some community spokespeople are actually making excuses for the basher and hinting that the former councilor may have deserved what he got. Neil Miller, a local gay writer who seems to be speaking for many in the gay community, was quoted in the Globe as saying that "Scondras bore some responsibility for the boy's rage if he propositioned someone so young." He also denounced the violence, but his comments can be read as justifying the "homosexual panic" defense for gay bashing -- a "defense" that the gay legal establishment has been battling for more than a decade.
At the root of this misguided overreaction is a fear that the allegations against Scondras implicate all gay men. Miller, citing sexual scandals involving US Representatives Gerry Studds and Barney Frank, contends that when gay public officials become involved "in the seamy side of sex," the gay community suffers. "While I feel pain for David," he says, "I also feel angry. Why can't our public figures behave?"
Michael Greene, president of the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Equal Rights Lobby, echoes this sentiment in the same Globe article: "As community leaders who are openly gay public officials, we have to hold ourselves to a higher standard of public scrutiny." But the problem with this "higher standard" is that it is always a double standard; once again, gay people are being judged differently than heterosexuals. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and former US senator Bob Packwood are two examples of public figures accused of sexual harassment in recent years. They have not been punished for their alleged actions. Why should gay public figures or elected officials be held to any other standard?
For Bronski, the "heart" of the story lies in what he sees as the overreaction of the 16-year-old to the alleged "groping" he received from Scondras. And Bronski is not too terribly concerned even if the boy was groped by Scondras as the boy alleged.
But he does detect in what - at that time and under his circumstances, and with his own prejudices - he views as an incident of "gay bashing." He doesn't see what the big deal is, even i the boy was groped by the much older gay, ex-Councilor - might not a stern verbal rebuke have sufficed? And he also sees evidence of "internal" gay bashing as well, with members of the local gay community also questioning their own conduct.
What Bronski appears to object to greatest, and which he seems to take most personally, is the suggestion - by gay leaders themselves - that gay needs to be held to a higher standard, to provide the "straight" community with a greater "gay" level of comfort. But, says, Bronski, there should be no higher standard than with anyone else - in fact, the standard should sink (in Bronski's view) as low as that of anyone else, say U.S. Justice Thomas (never charged with any offense, nor credibly accused), or Bob Packwood (who confessed to many lowly things). "They," said Bronski, "have never been punished for their alleged actions."
Bronski closes with what amounts to a challenge to the gay community to not try and "fit in" with the rest of society:
The gay community's defense of anti-gay violence, of a double standard for gay people, stems from the fear that the overtly sexual actions of some gay people -- be it Barney Frank enjoying the attentions of a hustler, the Lesbian Avengers' "bed float" at Pride this year, Queer Nation kiss-ins, or David Scondras cruising a hotel lobby -- will harm the cause of gay rights and gay freedom. Have we become so defensive, so worried about conforming to the restrictions of the heterosexual world, that we cannot see the simple truth? Freedom that we win by not annoying straight people, by being "better" than straight people, by essentially denying our sexuality, is no freedom at all.
His caveat not to change their behavior in any way to better get along with others - citing Barney Frank favorably - make for an ironic comparison to the Mark Foley debacle.
David Scondras: Alleged molester of a 16-year-old boy in a movie theatre. Immediately condemned, including by the local gay community, mostly because having (allegedly) done something as sleazy as enticed a young boy to the movies to molest him, further deepens the "fear" which the heterosexual community allegedly manifests. But, says Bronski, it is wrong, because gays should not even try to conform to someone else's standard. Be-damned the views of others.
Mark Foley: Alleged (initially) to have sent a few e-mails to a former page - no longer a page, no longer within his physical grasp, and older than when he served - which asked how he was doing, what he wanted for Christmas, and requested that he e-mail him a picture. Not condemned by anyone who had read the e-mails on their own - including numerous media organizations, members of Congress on both sides of the aisle, political hit groups, and others. Including the boy's parents, who demanded that the matter be dropped.
Now, with the advent of the Instant Messages (of an entirely different character than the innocuous e-mails) - the tone has changed - solely to serve as a political attack against Republicans - and the consequence being an concerted political effort to turns their guns upon Dennis Haster, House Speaker, because attacking the person actually responsible - Mark Foley - is a pointless exercise, as he is gone. The result of this political shift in focus to Hastert is the nature of the charge that must be made: Hastert should have done something - they can't say what, because the e-mails are non-actionable under any circumstance.
But this something has to be predicated on something - and that something is now Mark Foley's sexual orientation.
Democrats cannot have it both ways - although trying to do so is one of the Party's hallmarks. To even try and make such a case of "neglect" against Dennis Hastert, the Democrats have no option but to jettison the gay and lesbian rights community, and succumb to what they have been accusing Republicans of for ages: Homophobia.
The cost of the Mark Foley-inspired "witch hunt" will be very expensive for the Democratic Party.
Gays....I'm SICk of them because all they think about is SEX!
Sen. Teddy Kennedy
Sen. John Kerry Heinz
U.S. House of Representatives - Mass.
Capuano, Michael E.
Lynch, Stephen F.
Neal, Richard E.
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