Addressing what she calls the "cesspool story" of the Ashley Madison data leak, Mary Elizabeth Williams acknowledges in Salon the schadenfreude that's taken hold after revelations came to light of Josh Duggar possibly being among the exposed cheaters. "On the spectrum of individuals whose glass houses seem ripe for some good old-fashioned stone throwing, Josh Duggar's got to be near the top of the list," she writes. But Williams thinks our outrage is misplaced, and that instead of gloating over a moralist who's now getting his comeuppance, we should be furious at the hacking "vigilantes" who have "done their dirty work for a bunch of tabloids, who are using the detailed personal information they obtained to wreak havoc in an yet untold number of lives."
At this point, "we've come to take it for granted that any number of forces—the government, or a shadowy group calling itself Impact Team that has an ax to grind against Ashley Madison—can just rummage through our most intimate data," Williams writes. That private info, she adds, can include everything from embarrassing inclusion on cheating-spouse lists to private photos and Amazon orders. "Let’s just point and judge it all!" she writes. She's not into the subjective moralizing that goes along with this type of thing. "Far more than Josh Duggar's list of qualities he's looking for in a bang-buddy, I'm disgusted by the lie that if you're good, you don't need to worry about your privacy, and that as long as you don't have any secrets, you don't have anything to be afraid of," she writes. (Read Williams' entire column on Salon.)