4 lessons you can learn from the Colombian prostitute in the Secret Service scandal

Over the weekend, a HUGE scandal erupted when 11 Secret Service agents were recalled from their security duties in Colombia after it was discovered that at least one of them had been soliciting prostitutes in Cartagena.  The controversy came to light after one of the agents became involved in a dispute with a woman over a payment and Colombian police reported the incident to the U.S. Embassy.

While prostitution is legal in many areas of Colombia, the allegations sparked public furor with citizens saying the behavior was not up to par with what they expect from the U.S. Secret Service.  President Obama spoke out for the first time about it yesterday, saying "of course I'll be angry" if the accusations are true and that he expected the investigation into the matter to be thorough and rigorous.

 

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But while the incident is no laughing matter (seriously people, Obama was there to discuss important trade relations--way to ruin the focus of the trip!), I can't help but think that there are some serious life lessons to be learned here -- particularly from the gutsy Colombian woman who was brave enough to call out those slimy Secret Service men.

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Think about it! This woman was just doing her job (albeit one most people don't condone) and by speaking out, is now the center of a huge media firestorm. Here are five things her actions have taught me:

  1. Know how you should be treated at your job, no matter what your line of work is. Though many would argue whether prostitution is morally right, legally, the woman was doing nothing wrong – just her job. So just like any other working person, she should be paid for her services …which means she was totally right to demand compensation as she reportedly did! Anyone being ill-treated at a work place should speak up.
  2. Don't let authority intimidate you. Besides the actual president himself, there are few people I can think of that are scarier to go up against than those from the US Secret Service --especially when not only are you an ordinary citizen with no governmental power, but a paid escort sure to be criticized by the whole world. Still that thinking didn't stop this woman! She went to the police, national authority be damned. You gotta admit that takes nerves of steel!
  3. Power players can be weak. We've seen this time and time again with cheating and prostitution scandals among politicians--obviously they're not perfect. But somehow, it still managed to surprise me that these men succumbed to such inappropriate pleasure seeking while on a foreign relations trip with the President of the United States.  And even more surprising is that the underdog--this woman--seemed to be the stronger of the bunch in this scenario, taking a stand for herself.
  4. Don't mess with a Colombian woman! Clearly, spunk and bravery runs in spades in that country. Actually, this pretty much applies to most Latina women--timidity just isn't our style.

What do you think of the scandal?

Archive image via jubilo haku/flickr

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