When does a smear become too personal? And when do personal attacks go too far?
For answers, let’s take a look at Kathleen Vermillion vs. Steve Sisolak, former lovers that have graduated to that illustrious and all too frequent uplevel of relationship known as the bitter enemy stage.
The crux of Kathy Vermillion’s very public beef with former boyfriend, Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak, can be summed up with the following phrase: “He said, so she said, then he said, now she says, etc”.
Here’s the backstory: Vermillion, a former Henderson City Councilperson, went under heavy scrutiny for her financial management of the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth, a charity she founded twelve years ago. She reportedly plans on severing ties with her own foundation so any controversy affecting her won’t rub off on the charity.
How very charitable.
While that machine is still turning, there’s apparently no better time to attempt to deflect unwanted attention than when faced with the harsh spotlight of an investigation; now the spotlight has to share center stage with a civil lawsuit brought by Vermillion against Steve Sisolak.
Enter Sisolak, stage left.
Seemingly angered that Sisolak violated her privacy by publicly discussing the results of a drug test she had taken, Vermillion quickly slaps Sisolak with a defamation lawsuit alleging all manner of personal affronts, namely that he had an “improper and secretive” relationship with her teenaged daughter, including late night texting, a movie “date” and a trip to Victoria’s Secret for a quick shopping spree.
After being slapped with the lawsuit, Sisolak started slapping back. He’s now alleging extortion, claiming that he was told that the lawsuit would be dropped for a mere $3.9 million. He’s recently approached Metro Police with the allegations; and that’s the lay of the land at this point.
When is enough enough? It’s scary how easily a serious issue regarding alleged monetary displacement slipped into a mud-throwing, public free for all. Scarier still is how the vicious personal attacks have the power to annihilate political careers. Unfortunately, destroying careers seems to be the very reason why the mud starting slinging to begin with.
Some might say that Sisolak started it by disclosing private information publicly; others might feel that Vermillion shouldn’t have reacted in kind. Who really cares who started it; when does it stop?
The basis of today’s rant: what should be private isn’t; and those things that need to be made public aren’t.
Born in France and raised in SoCal, Dorian Issock’s reviews, blogs and other literary tidbits appear in Desert Companion Magazine, The New Colonist, Urban Art, and scores of online destinations across the internet.