Lesson to be Learned from Congressman Weiner

Can we learn anything from U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner's sexting on Twitter?  A picture is worth a thousand words, and no, I'm not referring to the Congressperson's lascivious Twitter photos.

Check out U.S. Representative Weiner's facial expressions during his public mea culpa and what do you notice? Pursed lips, a tight forehead and solemn eyes, as observed by Albany Times-Union staff writer, Kristi Gustafson. According to body language experts, "the lip pursing results from a half, or partial truth, and suggests there is more."  In other words, Congressman Weiner is withholding some information even as he claims to be "coming clean".

The facial expressions of Congressman Weiner, President Clinton, Elliott Spitzer and Brett Favre have one common trait: compressed or retacted lips.  Body language experts say that "compressed or retracted lips most often occur when someone is forced to discuss something he doesn't want to talk about--or when he is holding something back."  The pursued lips and tight forehead is "an attempt to hide many intense emotions; sadness, fear and anger", according to the expert.  Suppressed fear, disgust and anger often accompany this look.

Watch the facial expression of the next fallen movie star or politician and watch carefully for the pursued lips, tightened forehead and half smile.  The facial expression tells more than the actual words.  Now, take these body language cues to your next trial, or better yet, when teaching your witnesses what they should avoid when testifying.

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