Afternoon Reading List 07.31.13.

Weiner lasting more than four months is doubtful — When Anthony Weiner announced his bid for New York City mayor, his campaign was about a fresh start and using his past to learn from his mistakes. He had mostly been laying low, and it appeared that NYC voters were in support of Weiner’s political comeback. But, as Politico’s Edward-Isaac Dovere and Maggie Haberman report, July has not been a good month for the Weiner as another sexting scandal emerged with the now infamously porntastically-named Sydney Elaine Leathers. Most recently, his dismissal of the opinions of the Clintons, who Dovere and Haberman label “the first family of Democratic politics, cements his nose dive that he has little chance of stopping before the Sept. 10 primary. A recent poll puts him in fourth place and shows that 53 percent of New Yorkers want him to drop out of the race.

Why you should read it: Weiner’s campaign has definitely suffered from continued blows, and this piece looks at how he went from a strong mayoral candidate to a running joke.

About those Twitter messages — Speaking of Weiner, Charles C. Johnson of The Daily Caller reports on the varying accounts of the mayoral candidate’s communication with a then-17-year-old girl in 2011. The girl, Margaret Henning, and her family offer differing accounts of just how many messages Weiner sent Henning and what the contents of those messages were. Henning’s mother says he sent two messages, an unnamed family member says he sent three and Weiner says he sent five. Wow, did he foolishly high ball that one that? Leading up to the communication, Henning had made public on Twitter her obsessive love of Weiner, tweeting things like “HE IS MINE ALL MINE HE LOVES ME AND NO ONE ELSE ILY ILY ILY!!!” She also made public her love of caps lock and lack of punctuation. After expressing her Weiner love, he followed her on Twitter until he was called out by Twitter users, but followed her again after multiple tweets begging him to do so. The Daily Caller also pulled some pretty great pictures from Henning’s Facebook page to publish with the story.

Why you should read it: Henning had a very high school-like crush on the then-congressman, which Weiner apparently couldn’t resist after seeing his Twitter handle in so many tweets. Make sure you read the tweets at the end.

To spank or not to spank? — In a piece for The Atlantic, Andrea Nair asks a question that more and more parents seem to be asking: when should you spank your child? Or, for that matter, should you ever? Well, as Nair argues, most people shouldn’t. As a psychotherapist and parenting educator, she says being spanked is a risk factor for mental illness, addictions and sexual problems. One exception, however, is cases similar to former NBA all-star Michael Ray Richardson, who Nair met at a private dinner. Richardson said he respected and feared his single mother, who was raising six other children, and that she “whooped him so badly, it kept him off the streets.” In extreme cases, Nair says, spanking is the “lesser of two evils,” but outside of these situations, alternative discipline methods should be developed.

Why you should read it: Spanking is something that there’s not a clear consensus on, but Nair offers a well-developed argument against it. You can either use it in developing your parenting skills or else use it to give your folks a hard time for the spankings you got as a kid.

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