Skip to main content

If Weiner is 'deviant' then maybe we all are

By Will Cain, CNN Contributor
  • Will Cain says with his sex scandal, Rep. Weiner joins long list of other politicians
  • He says mass indignation about his actions is almost funny
  • He says researchers found "kinky" sexuality is fairly common in general population
  • Cain: We should not be so naive; what's offensive about Weiner is not the sex part, it's the lying

Editor's note: Will Cain, a CNN contributor who appears on "In the Arena" weekdays at 8 p.m. ET, is a media entrepreneur, small-business owner and host of "Off the Page" on Find him at; or on Twitter

(CNN) -- In the last two days we learned again what we learned two weeks ago - and before that two months ago - and before that a little over two years ago. We'll learn it again in another two months. People are sexual deviants. Damn near all people.

Congressman Anthony Weiner has already admitted sending "check-me-out" pics through Twitter. Several women have claimed that he engaged in phone sex, "sexting" little "Haiku's" like, "ridiculous bulge in my shorts now. wanna see?" With all of this, he joins a long list of politicians caught in sex scandals. A list that includes:

• Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who fathered a love child with the maid while married

• Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards who fathered a love child with a videographer while married

• Former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who hired prostitutes

• Louisiana Sen. David Vitter, who hired prostitutes

• South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford ,who had an extramarital affair with an Argentinean girlfriend

• Former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey, who had an extramarital affair with an Israeli boyfriend

• Former Nevada Sen. John Ensign, who had an extramarital affair with a staffer's wife

• Former New York Rep. Chris Lee, who trolled for girls on Craigslist and sent shirtless muscle pics while married

• Former Florida Rep. Mark Foley, who sent instant messages to teenage boys working as congressional pages

New photo in Weiner scandal
NYT: Rep. Weiner's wife pregnant
Why pols keep taking sexual risks
The RidicuList: Jon Stewart

You could add to that list names like Thomas Jefferson, Grover Cleveland, Warren Harding, FDR, Dwight Eisenhower, JFK, LBJ, Bill Clinton and your neighbor Frank. I can't help but laugh at the collective indignation we indulge with each new story.

Because here's the difference between these guys and your average cross-section of "normal" American men: When these guys get caught, you hear about it. Let me be clear, this isn't to excuse Weiner or any of these men, I'm just saying don't be so surprised, don't be so naive, and tread a little carefully with your moralizing.

You cannot imagine what the guy in the cubicle next to you is imagining.

The point is that if you rip back the covers on many people's thoughts and actions, you're going to find some shocking things. Is what Weiner did creepy? Yes. Is it unique? Deviant? I'm not so sure. A new book entitled "A Billion Wicked Thoughts: What the World's Largest Experiment Reveals about Human Desire" chronicles the work of two scientists who studied a massive trove of online sex-related search data to find out what people really want. The book reveals:

• Straight men enjoy a wider variety of erotica than imagined, including sites devoted to elderly women and transsexuals

• Straight men prefer heavy women to thin ones

• Straight men have a fascination with other men's penises

• Men fantasize about group sex far more than women and picture more men than women in the action

Combine these kinky revelations with findings that anywhere from 20% to 50% of people cheat and 15% of men have online sex, it gets hard to define what is "deviant." (If it's not obvious, I'm just laying the groundwork of rationalizations for the day my laundry is aired.)

All that said, I have the hardest time understanding Weiner. I mean, I think most guys -- even those committed to a faithful relationship with their wives -- can understand, without excusing, the fidelity issues of some of the men listed. But sending out pictures of your excited pants to women you've never met? I know Weiner's not the only one to do this; I just don't get it.

The best explanation came from some of my favorite radio guys on KTCK The Ticket in Dallas who I heard asking why so many dudes adopt the "Jersey-Shore look" ('roided up, tight T-shirt, jeans with designs on the pocket, chain, etc. etc.). One of the hosts noted that these clowns are almost always with hot girls. Their conclusion: it must work. That's why guys dress that way; it works. I have to come to a similar conclusion on Weiner: it must have worked.

In the end, what offends me more than Weiner's tweeting is that he's such a big fat liar. For a week this guy sat down in front of Wolf Blitzer, Luke Russert and others to spin an elaborately fabricated story about being hacked, painting himself as a victim. This alone should be enough for him to lose his job. By the way, if any of these girls are underage, which Weiner is not sure of right now, well, forget everything I've said.

Until then, we shouldn't so willingly live in a world of naïveté. Because it won't be much more than another two weeks or another two months until we hear another story like this. Who knows? It may be yours.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Will Cain.

Featured Deal |