I read with a sigh about Keith Vaz today. I am so profoundly bored of the press thinking it's somehow their duty to talk about (homo)sexuality in a titivating manner. Ask yourself one simple question: is British politics a safer place now that Vaz has resigned from being the chair of the home affairs select committee? It it worth ignoring all the good he's done for the sake of a quick fix of moral indignation and a few giggles? Is a man who grapples with his sexuality on the occasional Saturday night really unable to govern? Frankly, the only people who should even venture to give a stuff about Vaz' "sordid" sex life are his family, and they certainly don't need to have his indiscretions listed in minute detail. No one should care. We all play the mock shock card, muttering how much we feel for his poor wife and children, but if we really felt for them, we wouldn't be writing about the situation in the papers. His wife and children are probably as humiliated as Vaz himself. How about we protect the innocent people here? This is a painful business which surely needs to be sorted out in private. If we really cared about Maria Fernandez, the headlines would talk about her pain, but instead they lead with what Vaz was meant to have said to the rent boy: "don't forget to bring the poppers..."
The whole business of creating honey traps for the purpose of column inches makes my blood boil. It's so very 1980s and really needs to be stamped out. No one is perfect. People have affairs all the time. None of us would stand up to scrutiny, no matter how holier than thou we all feel we are. We need colourful characters in politics. We need leaders, and by their very nature, leaders have flaws. By all means sack him for arsing up the economy, or for fiddling the books, or for breaking the law, but we absolutely need to move on from this nonsense or else the politicians who govern us will be boring, bland and ultimately ineffectual. I hope Keith, Maria and their family can sort their problems out and that he can continue to do what he does best: Govern this country.