With the latest news that Brian Cashman was being extorted by a woman whom he ended an affair with, I chuckled at how the New York media and Yankees baseball fans take this with so much stride. Most of the headlines spun the news item like Cashman was totally innocent and cooperated with the police to stop a criminal. Deadspin has the only high-traffic website that has been covering all of Brian Cashman’s extramarital affairs. The NY Post is better than the Daily News, at least, but The Post will forget about Cashman being a cheater once the season starts. The common reaction from people on the message boards goes a little something like this:
“Why does anyone besides Mrs. Cashman care who Brian Cashman is sleeping with? Why should they? This story is petty and pathetic.”
[Footnote: Cashman is married with children, but according to some he's 'separated' and has been living in a different house since 2009. But it's not like Mike Francesa or Michael Kay or Mike Lupica would ever ask Cashman this- after all "it's none of our business"- so I don't know for sure. It begs the question: why were they separated in the first place? Besides, they are still married, and how does he explain all of this to his kids?]
There are a few main branches of thought that come to my mind when people show apathy about Cashman cheating on his wife:
1) Public figures are generally looked down upon for cheating, but private individuals have a little more leeway when it comes to harsh judgements. For example, let’s say a friend of yours cheats on his or her spouse. What are you going to do? Lecture? Cut the person out of your life? Hand a Bible to the person? No, more than likely you will support your friend or hold your tongue and not judge the behavior to the person’s face. But public figures get hammered for cheating. You know, guys like Alex Rodriguez, Tiger Woods, Bill Clinton, Herman Cain, Arnold Schwarzenegger, John Edwards, Eliot Spitzer, and hundreds (or is it thousands) more.
Before you say “Brian Cashman isn’t at their level of public recognition and is just a General Manager”, keep in mind former Mets GM and ESPN announcer Steve Phillips got blasted for cheating on his wife.
There is a second level of hypocrisy: YOU would not want to be cheated on. YOU know it’s bad. But somehow you pick and choose who to forgive, who to lash into, and when cheating isn’t important. For example, no one really cared when Bill Cosby was exposed. People laughed when David Letterman confessed on his TV show. Next Gingrich, for some reason, gets a Free Pass from people (not the leftist media, though). No one cares about the Al Gore massage incident that occurred when he was married except Rush Limbaugh. Of course, Rush has been divorced three times, so he really should be speaking about relationships.
While so many polls show that most people believe affairs are wrong (and the majority of people publicly condemn those who have affairs), our support of monogamy is lip service. Depending on which study or survey you read, 15% to a whopping 70% of people have cheated on their spouses. We, the people, do care about reading about affairs. If we didn’t, the media wouldn’t sell it to us. So for every comment that says “I DON’T CARE”, understand you are in the minority.
Here’s the third level of hypocrisy: the same people that say they don’t care, probably think it was wrong that Thomas Jefferson, JFK, LBJ, MLK, and Mickey Mantle got Free Passes, and the media actually cooperated in the cover up.
If you’re a public figure, it goes with the territory. I don’t see why Deadspin is wrong with covering the Brian Cashman affairs. I actually think it’s wrong that the New York Daily News, WFAN, MLB and the YESNetwork continue to sweep it under the rug.
2) Why has society degenerated to the point where all morality and ethics are subjective? Why do Generation X and Generation Y sports fans give Brian Cashman the Free Pass and why do they hate judging bad behavior? Why do I hear, “As long as no one gets hurt, it’s OK” but for some reason the plight of the victims in the marriage (in this case Cashman’s wife and children) is a non-factor. I also hear, “Everyone cheats, so stop hating.” Well, I don’t cheat, and neither does DailySkew co-founder Tony Vahl, and neither does my business partner. Even my close friend who always joked to me about how it’s impossible to stay monogamous, was able to be faithful to his girlfriend. It’s possible to keep your vow, which you made under God.
The way I see it is that public outings serve a purpose to shame the cheater (if you can’t serve the time, don’t do the crime) and to remind people about wedding vows. I don’t even believe in God, and keep mine. What’s an Irish Catholic like Cashman’s excuse? Why do some fans defend him?
I’m tried of people calling it a personal issue. It’s a public relations black eye for the Yankees. These affairs seems stressful and distracting to Cashman. In the first affair that DeadSpin outed it seems that the husband of Cashman’s mistress hired a private eye and wants to drag Cashman in a civil suit. For the latest affair, Cashman was paying off the woman to keep quiet and then called the police when she kept asking for more.
3) The reason why the New York media will not question Cashman is because of ACCESS. Cashman controls Yankees news. Yankees news sells. BIG TIME. Cashman can be as rude and snotty as he wants to be to reporters, but in the end they have to play nice. This is the key reason why the media doesn’t attack Cashman like it smeared Steve Phillips.
4) What does cheating actually say about someone? It generally indicates a lack of discipline, that the person is a liar and engages in deception, if money is involved it involves control and power, and the opposite sex is usually seen as sex objects. It can also relate to social problems or mental illness which adversely effects the relationship. I do know Cashman has SUCKED as Yankees General Manager for some time, and treats some players like crap, and blows off the media when he can. The counter argument, of course, is Thomas Jefferson and other great leaders had affairs. Oh, well, I don’t have the answers for everything.
Bottom line: Don’t be a hypocrite, either accept and forgive EVERYONE for cheating (and that includes your own spouse) or don’t accept it from anyone (my point of view). The same holds true for the media, either report it all or cover it all up. The same is true for putting cheaters on the hot-seat and questioning their leadership and ability to focus on their job: either do it to everyone or no one.
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