Fallout from Weiner sexting scandal

FRESNO, California

Action News found strong opinions on both sides of the issue. We talked with five women and five men about whether they believe sending seductive pictures of yourself is adultery. More than half of the group said yes, sexting is cheating.

When Congressman Anthony Weiner came clean Monday, it brought about the question of whether sending provocative pictures of yourself to someone else, is cheating. It seems many Valley residents have a clear opinion.

Charles Clancy said, "It's not physically cheating but I think it's mentally cheating, yeah."

Jacquii Bailey said, "I don't think sexting is necessarily cheating because some people's personalities are like flirtatious but you take it to the next level and start thinking about actually carrying out the acts, that's when you are crossing the line."

Ron McLain is the executive director of the Healthy Marriage Coalition. He believes "sexting" is cheating and he's spoken with several women who agree.

"I've actually talked to women who have said if my husband had an emotional affair with another woman, that would be as painful to me as if he had slept with her so it's very painful for people," said McLain. "I would imagine his wife is really hurting right now."

Fresno State Social Media Director Katie Johnson says public figures and politicians need to realize that messages sent over the internet are difficult to delete. Fessing up is best.

Katie Johnson said, "The best practice is to admit the mistake and move on but he tried to cover up and what the internet provides is this never-ending sea of photos and things that you've done online that just doesn't go away."

Regardless of their opinion, almost everyone agreed, if you are in a relationship, it is not acceptable to send someone else sexy pictures.

Michelle McWilliams said, "Any kind of involvement that involves something personal and intimate when you are in a romantic relationship with somebody else is inappropriate because you are filling a void that you shouldn't be filling."

McLain says for the congressman, that immediate gratification or excitement clearly surpassed his better judgment. "I think with Weiner perhaps, he found pleasure to the point in doing this that where it was greater pleasure for him to do that then risking his career."

Many of the people we talked with said they are anxious to see what happens to the congressman's marriage and whether this will ultimately end his political career.

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