Letters to the Editor: Sexist or not, the ‘Billy Graham rule’ works for famous men

Rep. Robert Foster (R-Miss.) is a first-term lawmaker who is running for governor of Mississippi.
(Rogelio V. Solis / Associated Press)

To the editor: Concerning the use of the so-called Billy Graham rule by Republican Rep. Robert Foster in his campaign for Mississippi governor, it is important to know that not only is the rule more common that one might think, but that it works for many.

Some famous men in particular have a proclivity to fear and avoid “any situation that may evoke suspicion or compromise.”

For example, the Rev. Rick Warren said in a 2012 interview with theologian John Piper said that he had never been alone with a woman who wasn’t his wife in his 31 years of ministry. He said he never shared an elevator even with his secretary, nor would he stop to help a woman stranded on the side of a highway.

He justified this by saying he would “rather go overboard than be thrown overboard.” I am sure than many other men feel the same way.

Some men, as we daily read about, are sexist monsters who prey on women. Others are just the opposite and will not let themselves be led into temptation.


Jim Van Cleave, Laguna Niguel


To the editor: These men who profess to follow the “Billy Graham rule” know themselves better than I do, but do they really believe all women are that duplicitous or they are so studly that women cannot keep their hands off them?

The other option, of course, is that they know themselves to have no self-control. That’s certainly what I want in a candidate.

As someone who once worked on both congressional and gubernatorial campaigns, I know that you never send the candidate out alone. Travel time can be used to study the issues, work on upcoming remarks, call key donors or simply catch a little rest before the next stop on the campaign trail.

As far as I can tell, Rep. Foster is strictly amateur-hour material.

Janet K. Schwartzkopf, Palm Springs