by Mike Shaw
Relationships are difficult and apparently the old adage, “Hell hath no fury like a women scorned” can also apply to ex gay lovers. It gets even more complicated if you are nationally known for your outspokenness on border issues and your ex is accusing you of threatening to have him deported.
Such is the situation that Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu finds himself in. To make matters worse Sheriff Babeu’s ex provided some candid photos to a tabloid in Phoenix that have been liberally shared by press outlets from sea to shining sea. One Tucson TV Anchor, Dan Marries, said on Facebook that it reminded him of Congressman Weiner’s tweeted, um, member of Congress. In Babeu’s defense, he did not tweet these pictures himself, rather it was his ex that exposed the photos for all to see. To give Marries the benefit of the doubt perhaps he just meant the nature of the photo and not the means of transmission.
While Sheriff Babeu admits that he is gay and that his accuser Jose is an ex boyfriend, Babeu denies that he made any threats or had any knowledge of Jose being in the country illegally. In a “he said he said” situation like this we will likely never know for sure. You would think that if Jose had some sort of tape recording he would have provided that to the media already. Considering the salacious material he has already provided why would he hold that back?
Obviously all of this is making a big splash in the news and here I am writing about it too. Sheriff Babeu (most of us refer to him as Sheriff Paul) is running for Congress in District 4. While many knew that Sheriff Paul was gay, many (including me) did not. For me that news is not an issue when it comes to his service to country and Pinal County. I consider the Sheriff an acquaintance (we’ve only spoken briefly a couple of times) and someone that I respect and admire.
I have heard him speak in the past where his heart for God and belief in forgiveness and restoration was on full display. The Bible teaches that all sex outside of marriage is not right and that all sin can bring bad consequences into our lives. It’s because we can’t always do what is right that we need a Savior in the first place. However, when we mess up we should stop doing what is wrong and run to a loving God who forgives. I imagine that Sheriff Paul knows all this and it’s something that he is going to have to work out between himself and God. Truth be told, all Christians struggle with sin and everybody needs forgiveness.
Pinal County’s beloved Sheriff isn’t running for Pope or Pastor, he is running for Congress. These revelations will likely hurt him in his race, but an unproven accusation from a former boyfriend shouldn’t be enough to derail his candidacy. For me the only pertinent questions are; did Sheriff Paul know that Jose was an illegal? did Sheriff Paul threaten his ex with deportation? I respect and admire Paul Babeu’s service to our country and I believe he is telling the truth.