Justice

People Are Blaming Huma Abedin for Anthony Weiner's Sexting Scandal

August 29th 2016

By:
Lucy Tiven

Media coverage of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton's long-time aide Huma Abedin, due to her separation from husband Anthony Weiner — a former congressman and New York City mayoral candidate ensnared in multiple sexting scandals — has spurred a discussion about sexism and victim-blaming on Twitter.

Abedin released a statement Monday announcing that she planned to split with Weiner, the New York Times reported. News of Abedin's decision arrived in the wake of a recent report from the New York Post that Weiner allegedly exchanged a sext with an unidentified woman that included their 5-year-old-son in an image of his crotch.

In a story on the sexting scandal and separation, the Washington Post alleged that the incidents "raised questions" about Abedin's decision to leave her child at home with her husband while traveling with Clinton.

From the Post:

"The day after these revelations, Weiner isn't just facing questions about his political career. He's facing questions about his parenting skills. And for the third time, his questionable decisions are ensnaring his wife, one of Hillary Clinton's top aides, by raising questions about her decision to leave their son in a potentially dangerous situation."

Several Twitter users took issue with this line of thought.

Using the debacle to take issue with Abedin's judgment seems to place blame on Abedin for Weiner's infidelity rather than Weiner himself.

As Marriage and Family Therapist Sheri Meyers explained on the Huffington Post, men who cheat on their partners also frequently blame their girlfriends or wives for losing interest in them or creating "the problem."

To this point, some social media users have claimed that Abedin is to blame for Weiner's infidelity because of her schedule traveling on the campaign trail or her close friendship with Clinton.

The Drudge Report gestured to these rumors with the headline "Huma Chooses Hillary" — which fails to consider that Abedin might have chosen to separate from her husband for personal reasons that have more to do with having endured at least three separate sexting scandals than Clinton or her role in the campaign.

Others attacked Abedin's looks and personality.

In a statement, Donald Trump also suggested that the incident was indicative of Clinton's "bad judgement."

“Huma is making a very wise decision. I know Anthony Weiner well, and she will be far better off without him,” Trump said, according to the New York Times.

“I only worry for the country in that Hillary Clinton was careless and negligent in allowing Weiner to have such close proximity to highly classified information,” he continued. “Who knows what he learned and who he told? It’s just another example of Hillary Clinton’s bad judgment. It is possible that our country and its security have been greatly compromised by this.”

As some have pointed out, Weiner's behavior isn't something Clinton, Abedin, or anyone other than Weiner is responsible for.

Some Twitter users have taken up the hashtag #ImWithHuma to show their support for Abedin.

Abedin, for her part, asked for respect and privacy.