The story of Mitt’s bullying his gay classmate has been troubling me all day. It wouldn’t be excusable under any circumstances, but when I put it in the context of who Mitt Romney was at the time of the attack, it’s especially unforgivable.
It was after spring break of Mitt’s senior year. He had been accepted to Stanford University. He was dating the young woman who would become his wife. His father, who had amassed great wealth and given Mitt the upbringing of a prince, was now governor of Michigan. Mitt was handsome and healthy. He had everything going for him, he had lived a charmed life so far, and had every reason to believe his future would be golden.
Under those circumstances, why would Mitt go after someone whose life was already miserable (John Lauber was being constantly teased for his assumed homosexuality). If Mitt didn’t have the strength of character to try to protect Lauber and discourage other boys from hurting him, why couldn’t he at least leave him alone?
I keep thinking about Lauber struggling while he was held down by other boys as Mitt cut his hair. What if the scissors had slipped, and Lauber had ended up losing an eye or had a brain injury? What kind of embarrassment would that have been for his father, whom he supposedly loved and admired so much? Aside from his cruelty toward Lauber, Mitt was being ungrateful and cruel to his parents.
For me it comes down to the Gospel of Luke: “For everyone to whom much is given, of him shall much be required.” Mitt only understood the first half. Listening to him laugh as he was interviewed about the incident on Fox News, I’m not sure he understands the rest even today.