Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Is faithfulness harder for celebrities and politicians?

Nowadays, it seems we cannot turn the TV on without hearing about an affair involving a celebrity or politician. Conservative (and liberal) politicians cheating on their wives, movie stars doing the same thing. But is being faithful harder for these individuals than those not in the spotlight?

I believe the answer is yes. I'm not giving a pass to anyone who cheats, including famous people, but I do think there are many more occassions of sin for these individuals than the average joe. We've all heard countless stories of rock stars going to their hotel room and waiting for them is a naked call girl. Famous people are often accosted by good-looking individuals who are more than willing to perform sexual favours. In this onslaught of temptation, many give in.

I believe the more we expose ourselves to the perils of sin, the more we will fall. That's why Catholic teaching warns against exposing ourselves to the "near occassion of sin". This would include entering a strip club, entering an adult video store, etc. It also depends on the individual. If someone has tried unsuccessfully to kick his porn habit, the only solution may be to remove the internet from his home. However, if a man has no temptation to watch internet smut, such a drastic step may not be necessary.

As I've mentioned before, it is easier to avoid sin at the very earliest stages. Approaching sin as a hero is normally a bad idea. Most of us are not exposed on a daily basis to occassions of sin, unless we choose to be. Many celebrities, however, are.

But being exposed to more sinful scenarios does not remove the guilt of committing a sin. Those in these situations must be ever more vigilant. I remember a story about Billy Graham, the famous pastor. He would clear the entire floor of women in his hotel to avoid temptation. Some people thought this was extreme, but Billy knew how valuable his reputation is. Our society always seeks out lurid details of misbehavior, and Billy Graham knew about this.

Let's pray for our politicians and celebrities that they may set a good example for everyone.

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