One of the more despicable things about these despicable times is the callous disregard some people have displayed for the sanctity of individual privacy. I’m talking about private persons. Public persons (and among that number I include myself) know what we’ve signed up for and have learned to accept most of the consequences. We are frequently spoken of poorly and routinely burned in effigy, metaphorically anyway. Any chefs not prepared for the heat know where the kitchen exit is.
But private people have the right to remain private. I’m thinking of the Paul Pelosis of the world. I’m thinking of the Hunter Bidens of the world. Their accidental relationship to famous people isn’t their fault. They have just as much right to privacy as Ted Cruz’ daughter or Barron Trump. They are non-combatants in a world at war.
It’s a topic rarely mentioned, but while Republicans have spent the last two or three years dragging Hunter Biden’s name through the mud, very few of us good guys have come to Hunter’s actual defence. Usually what we do instead is refer to such things as the laptop imbroglio as a Republican red herring, while virtue signalling that “if Hunter Biden is guilty of a crime then he should go to jail.”
Oh yeah? Well so should the person saying it. So should you. So should I. So should anyone. So what? How is that little factoid revelatory? Why is it important? The point remains, Hunter Biden has not been charged with any crime. Not by anyone. There is no evidence to suggest that Hunter Biden is guilty of a crime. If there were then Republicans would be parading it up and down Pennsylvania Avenue right now. Why the hell don’t we all leave Hunter Biden alone?
It’s sometimes easy to forget that these people we often so insouciantly speak of are human beings. What a revelation it becomes when a reminder comes our way! Elon Musk recently tweeted, “They posted my exact real-time location, basically assassination coordinates, in (obvious) direct violation of Twitter terms of service.” To which I replied, “How does it feel to be like Hunter Biden, Paul Pelosi, AOC, and any number of other people you’ve helped to vilify? Why is it a******* like you only ever “get” empathy when it happens to you?”
And that’s finally often the point. Republicans love to destroy, threaten, doxx and endanger other people online as long as it doesn’t happen to them. The minute it happens to them they finally “get” what it feels like. Before that happens you cannot appeal to their imaginations or their empathy because they haven’t got any.
This is all down to the logic of the mob. Mobs are not now and never have been a source of justice. We should have learned that from January 6. The mob is where passions run high and restraints run low.
The point remains that Republicans are going after Hunter Biden because President Joe Biden doesn’t wear tan suits, has never stolen from anyone, isn’t a clown who wears makeup or brags all the time, hasn’t destroyed family businesses, hasn’t paid off hookers, has never raped a woman, has never stolen classified documents or tried to inflame an insurrection. Republicans are cowards, inadequate, insecure and stupid cowards. That’s why they go after Hunter Biden. They are little men and little women with massive inadequacy complexes.
So they are going to form a committee and go after the President’s son because it’s the only way they know how to hurt the President himself. Let’s not help them out by going around insisting that Hunter Biden should be put in jail if he’s guilty of something. That’s creating a moot hypothetical where nothing actually exists. Let’s instead call this what it actually is, a witch hunt. If Hunter Biden weren’t related to Joe Biden, Republicans would drop him like a hot potato.
There are eight million stories in the naked city of Republican hypocrisy, stupidity, lies and inadequacies. This has been one of them. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.