Tom Malin: Past Prostitute For State Rep

I don't know what it is about me and Sundays.

I got an email from a friend of mine about the (now nationally newsworthy) Tom Malin ordeal (Story by Grommer Jeffers and Brooks Egerton). "Here's an opportunity for Christians to prove they believe in the power of redemption," she points out lightheartedly.

After reading the Dallas Morning News story, one Tom Malin quote stuck in my head: "I don't regret my past, nor do I wish to shut the door on my past."

Since he says he doesn't mind, let's look at Malin's past.

Malin started out (at least his online) career as a gay prostitute working in New York and Los Angeles sometime around the summer of 2000.

[WARNING: the following links contain graphic pictures and are extremely inappropriate for minors]

In Malin's first website, he pulls his underwear down, shows off his behind, and advertises himself as "Todd Sharpe; model and porn star."  A blog site, with even more pictures, advertises Malin as "the most accommodating bottom in L.A."

Another blog website, which apparently reviews gay prostitutes, showed the following entry from Todd Sharpe in January, 2001:

"Hey there. I saw a review I got this week that said I wasn't taking on new clients. This is not true. I would like to retire soon (April), but I am still hosting existing clients and future guys as well."

The same website lists Todd Sharpe as "no longer escorting" as of 9/16/2002.  September, 2002 was not quite 3 1/2 years ago.

The news apparently caught the Democratic Party off guard including Domingo Garcia.  The DMN story quotes Domingo as saying "obviously we will have to reconsider our decision based on the new information."

How did Tom Malin's past become public?  Malin certainly didn't reveal it himself and the Dallas Morning News apparently knew nothing of it before endorsing him. Instead, it was a concerned fellow Democrat who blew the whistle.

So let's get back to this "redemption" idea.

Malin's campaign website opens quoting scripture: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."  He follows with a monologue detailing God's forgiveness, grace and redemption, leading in to the politics of the day.

"This election is not about me personally," says Malin.

But it is.

It is about a person who, perhaps as recent as 3 1/2 years ago, was "turning tricks" as a gay prostitute.

It is about a person who quotes scripture and claims redemption, yet who doesn't "regret" his past.

It is about a person who has a campaign claiming "integrity and character based in love, forgiveness and grace," but who hid the truth from supporters and those he wishes to serve.

Malin went on to say he didn't wish to "shut the door on [his] past."  But he certainly didn't elaborate.  So here are some questions that remain:

  • Malin claims service on the Dallas Police Review Board and the Civil Service Board.  What were his dates of service?

  • When did Malin start and retire from his career in prostitution?  What's the chronology of the rest of his background (i.e. "when was your career with Mary Kay, etc.")?
  • Why wasn't he forthcoming with, what he knew would be, big news?
  • When did he believe the truth about his prostitution career would become public? What impact did he believe it would have? Perhaps most important: does he feel this is a fair way to treat those whose trust he's asking for?
  • Are there any other "skeletons" in Tom Malin's closet?

We'll ask him and tell you what he said.  Perhaps we can learn whether Tom Malin is really the "changed" person he claims to be, or simply a politician who used to turn tricks, and now quotes Bible scripture to turn votes.

Just Look at California

Texans running for office have nothing on California government officials. Indeed, one could consider that Malin's past might actually prepare him for office. Another way to look at this is that Malin got his trickery (forgive me, I'm a pun addict), out of the way early.

Although it's too bad Malin didn't come out of the closet first, now that he's come clean so to speak, and he is running, it does address the issue of Forgiveness. Or not. I suspect "not."

I wonder how many of Dallas' voting Christians will be Sunday Only Christians - and quickly find reasons (couched in Bibical chapter verse) to demonstrate their true, un-Christian leanings.

In his defense, it's not as if Malin hurt people on a large scale. No, not like California's straight, fighter pilot rah-rah many times elected hero, and representative, Duke Cunningham. Cunningham sold his moral compass for 2.4 million and counting. Except he got caught. Plus, I heard he never came back home to campaign, (sliding to victory on his war record), because his handlers indicated it's hard to debate, drunk.

Also, and not mentioned in the article below, is both his current and former wife sought restraining orders.

So considering what's already been in Congress, I wouldn't get too excited about one past moral deviant, who is now going straight. Kinda.

Read Fed's Memo Highlights Duke's Audacity

Forgiveness Versus Election

None of us are fit to judge Malin's relationship with God. That's his territory. What we are fit to judge is whether or not he's qualified to represent us in the Texas House of Representatives.

I'm all for making amends for past transgressions and getting one's life back on track. But starting making changes in one's life doesn't necessarily equate to a changed life.

Put another way, I'm all for the rapist who turns his life around and finds God. That doesn't mean I am automatically willing to trust him with my daughter.

Tom Malin was engaged in a lawbreaking career perhaps as recently as 3 1/2 years ago. Does having recently turned his life around mean we should now hold him up as a model example of lawmaking?

Or would he be better served, using himself as a Christian example, and showing others why they shouldn't break the law?

Maybe Malin just needs a little track record under his belt--say 30 years or so of his newly changed life.

Thanks

When I saw this article in the paper, I hoped you might take on the topic. Thanks for adding additional facts as well as the links to the primary sources. This is another great example of how your blog works: shedding the light and letting us make up our minds with the raw data (gee, maybe this isn't the best story to use that term) you link to. And just when we thought Houston had a lock on the colorful Texas politician category.

No Job Too Big, No Paycheck Too Small

Yeah, the secret is not to get paid for doing it. I haven't exactly figured out how that works, but there must be a secret in there somewhere :)