Ran in the Nashville City Paper:
Last Friday's City Paper editorial ("Time has come for Wilder to remove himself," p. 2) embellished one detail of his "speech" on the senate floor. He was not speaking to the general public, but was making his "rambling and sometimes incoherent" prayer to his god. His words were said out of passion, not out of politics.
But that's not the key issue, of course. Nobody can fault Sen. Wilder for feeling a deep commitment to his peers in the senate and the citizens of his district. It would be fickle of him to try to distance himself from Sens. Crutchfield, Bowers, Newton and Ford at the first sign of adversity. His characterizations of the FBI and other law enforcement units, in my opinion, were off the mark, but his support for his peers, both Republican and Democrat, is right on.
I hope for a speedy resolution to this distraction that has many people, me included, questioning the ethical backbone of our leaders. We need to focus our energies towards serving justice, not throwing the entire process into turmoil.