The old “Blame the Wife” excuse is Alive and Well

“I had no involvement whatsoever in the flying of the flag,” Alito said in a written statement to The New York Times, which first reported the story this week. “It was briefly placed by Mrs. Alito in response to a neighbor’s use of objectionable and apersonally insulting language on yard signs.” So the wife did it to get back at the neighbors. ( CNN )

Take the prosecution of Sen. Bob Menendez, the New Jersey Democrats on trial in New York for federal bribery charges. Menendez’s trial is severed from one of his co-defendants, his wife, Nadine. Both Mr. and Mrs. Menendez deny wrongdoing, but at the outset of his trial this week, it seemed likely that one element of his defense could be to blame his wife. The senator was “in the dark” on money matters, his attorney told jurors.

Former Rep. Duncan Hunter, a California Republican, Szthe Mrs. defense when he and his wife were both accused of funneling campaign funds for private use. Hunter’s defense was that his wife, Margaret, handled the finances in their personal lives and for his campaign. Both Hunters ultimately pleaded guilty and were later pardoned by Trump.

And if the wife isn’t available, there are kids and/or pets who can be blamed — remember Ted Cruz escaping Texas for Mexico during the Texas power outage?

”Blame Her” is a cultural and legal phenom that plays into this thinking. Example: remember when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars? ; This was after a joke Rock aimed at Pickett-Smith was told from the stage and apparently offended Will Smith. And Pickett Smith has been roundly blamed for causing Smith to hit him (Psychology Today) . . . Pinkett Smith is now similarly on trial in the court of public opinion, with the theme of “toxic femininity” ever-present. The victim becomes the cause, indeed the fault, of the defendant’s criminal violence.”