Quod licet Bon Jovi

The old Latin experession, frequently cited by Bill Buckley, has it that “Quod licet Jovi, non licet bovi.” Translated literally, it means: “What is permitted to Jupiter is not permitted to oxen.” More loosely, I would translate it: “What is allowed a god is not allowed a dog,” or something to that effect. The saying may be a recognition of the reality principle or a testament to the permanence of double standards.

In news outside Wisconsin, it was reported earlier this week that the fabulously successful aging hipster Jon Bon Jovi hitched a ride on Air Force one to — where else? — an Obama fundraiser, this one at the Waldorf in New York. Mr. Bon Jovi performed at the fundraiser.

I have nothing bad to say about Mr. Bon Jovi except that his political judgment is way off. He is the kind of liberal who considers himself to have risen above his faith (Catholic). But he is a charitable man and, I believe, a family man, still married to his high school sweetheart. Before he became rock’s poster boy for family values, however, he was deemed “just another grinning heartthrob up to his hairy chest in groupies.”

In any event, I think we can say in this case, what is permitted Jovi is permitted someone lesser.

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