However, the saga of my relationship with Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn has hit the headlines again, so I suppose it’s time I say something about it. I’m a little sick of seeing my face on the TV news, and reading stuff about matters of profound privacy from people who know so little about it. In this column, I will confine myself to commenting on the media frenzy of last June, even though I suppose what everyone wants to know now is my take on the recent coverage. I’ve never written anything about this at all beyond a statement clearing up the media’s false timeline inferences.McBride goes on to question why this is even a story. She points out that she is not a public official, and even though her paramour Flynn is a public official, he should be allowed a zone of privacy.
I acknowledge that I am an imperfect human being. After the story broke in June, some people trashed me for not apologizing. Any apologies that I made (and I did make them) were made in private. I am not a public official; thus, I don’t see why I owed the public access to my apologies. The entire story felt like an invasion of privacy, and still does, right down to the “love letters” that were stolen and mailed anonymously to a newspaper which published excerpts without ever authenticating them.
Well, it is a story because Flynn is a public official, and that he agreed to take on a job that requires him to be a pillar of the community. Adulterous affairs don't quite qualify. Neither does dishonesty, and there are some that question whether the allegations brought forth by Paul Bucher, McBride's current husband, could affect Flynn's ability to lead and to be used as a witness.
Secondly, if one wanted to be nit-picky about it, McBride is a public employee, who is being paid with tax dollars to teach journalism. If she doesn't follow the basic principles of journalistic ethics, are the taxpayers getting their money's worth?
But I do agree with McBride that any apologies she owes are private matters. She is only in the news because of who she had the affair with. If she had an affair with the plumber or someone else of less prominence, it probably would have stayed under the radar, or at worst, be the subject of some short lived giggles among her detractors.
But considering that she has been more than willing to publish personal, and even false, information about people, should she be complaining now?
Dan Bice has his coverage of it here. What is remarkable about it are some of the comments that they are allowing to stand. I wouldn't even allow them to stay up.
But the best line of McBride's column is this (emphasis mine):
Aren’t public officials entitled to a zone of privacy, especially appointed cops who are hired solely to reduce crime? Chief Flynn wasn’t the archbishop standing on a soap box spouting off about personal morality; as for me, I wrote a column supporting gay marriage.What does gay marriage have to do with infidelity? Or is that just more evidence of the conservative mindset that all homosexual relations are nothing more than short-lived flings?