PoliticsNation host Rev. Al Sharpton, 58, has been forced to defend himself as pictures of him and his (much younger) girlfriend Aisha McShaw, 35, have sparked conversations about the morality of dating while still legally married.
Making their national debut at the 2013 Essence Musical Festival in New Orleans, the couple has been the subject of numerous headlines, causing the civil rights icon to wonder what all the fuss is about:
“His exact words to me were, ‘Rachel, I’m not announcing an engagement or a marriage,’ ” said Sharpton’s friend and publicist Rachel Noerdlinger said. “ ‘Don’t I have a right to date when my marriage has been over for a decade?’
Sharpton and wife, Kathy Sharpton, were married for 24 years before separating in 2004.
According to the NY Daily News, Sharpton has no plans on speaking about his dating life until his book is released:
“I don’t discuss his personal life and he doesn’t talk about it,” Noerdlinger said.
But she noted that some of his secrets will be out soon when he releases his memoir, “The Rejected Stone” in October.
The book chronicles Sharpton’s evolution from street activist to elder civil rights statesman. Noerdlinger said it also includes revelations about Sharpton’s private life including “dating younger and older women.”
McShaw admitted to being Sharpton’s girlfriend to the News, and reportedly was his date to President Barack Obama’s holiday party in December and to the black-tie White House Correspondents Dinner in April.
The couple has been photographed at several high-profile events and are reportedly fixtures at upscale New York social club, Grand Havana Room on Fifth Ave.
According to McShaw’s LinkedIn page, she is a personal stylist and does “personal banking” for Wells Fargo Bank.
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