Poor Chris Collins, my former congressional representative, didn’t learn the lesson that my high school chemistry teacher, Mr. B., informed our class of 16-year-old kids while cautioning us not to cheat on a test. He stated, “It’s OK to cheat but not to get caught.”
Chris cheated and got caught. Then he lied about it. Well, knowing his guilt he maintained that he did nothing wrong, kept lying to the FBI, the press and most of all to his constituents. Even to the point of being re-elected under false pretenses.
Only when he faced the devastation to his family and his reputation did he finally admit his wrong. Remorse only set in when he realized there was no other way out and so he finally changed his plea to guilty taking the responsibility he should have come clean with much earlier. At sentencing he wept in front of the judge in a plea for mercy.
Poor Chris violated Mr. B’s rule and got caught. Had he not been caught would he have ever realized he was wrong? Doubtful, as Mr. B. said that it is not wrong to cheat only to be caught. Chris certainly did not intend to be caught or even admit anything.
Mr. B. was wrong to say that to 16-year-olds and Chris was wrong to cheat and even worse the continuum of lies. In spite of his sobs for mercy it is likely that he only regrets getting caught. It is hard to comprehend that he did receive a reduced sentence.
Even that may not matter, however, as someone in the White House may comment on how unfairly such a “loyal” public servant has been treated and pardon poor Chris.
Pardon me, I disagree. So it goes for the voters in trusting our representatives.