The Impeachment Thing – Look, I know everyone’s tired of hearing about it. For that reason alone, I paused before starting this paragraph – I don’t feel the need to add to the cacophony (what a great word) related to this subject. However, I feel pretty strongly about my opinion, so here’s my two bits (or several hundred bytes).
I don’t get people who say Clinton shouldn’t be impeached because this is just about his sex life, and it should be his own private problem. Duh – this isn’t about sex. He stood in front of a grand jury, swore an oath, and then said he hadn’t even ever been alone with Ms. Lewinsky. The foundation on which our entire legal system is built in this great democracy is trial by jury. And the cornerstone of that foundation is that people appearing in a court of law must tell the truth. Without the presumption that everyone in a trial must tell the truth (which is not to say they DO tell the truth), the entire system of trial by a jury of your peers is rendered null and void.
Our Constitution gives us the right to such a trial, if we perform a misdeed. In return, we as citizens have a responsibility to uphold our legal system and perform by it’s rules, no matter how painful. There are hundreds of people sitting in prison today because they perjured themselves in a court of law. Our President, as a citizen, should be held to the same standard.
(Taking a breath…this entry was going to be about several things I don’t get, but I am unwilling to dismount mid-rant. So if you’re sick of this whole situation and don’t want to hear another word about it, bail out now.)
Add to that the damage this whole affair has done to the moral fabric of this country. I’m not trying to be righteous – as an adult, I am smart enough to know that very few people actually possess the morals they profess to. I’m talking about the children. My kids have taken away one thing from this whole episode – the President got caught doing something bad, he got in trouble, he lied about not doing it, and now he’s in BIG trouble. To a child, not only does this demonstrate that all grownups probably lie, but if the President is let off and not punished for it, the lesson is that grownups can lie and GET AWAY WITH IT.
It used to be that we revered our Presidents, that we held them up as the moral compass of our country. Given the current situation, today’s kids have lost that opportunity. My wife related to me a story about an incident she observed involving the five-year old across the street and one of his five-year old friends. The one boy stole a toy from the other’s hands – the other boy got angry and told his mother – the first boy lied and said he didn’t do it – the second boy retorted, “You liar! Who are you, Bill Clinton?”. These kids are FIVE.
Not to mention that if the manager of my local McDonalds got caught in the frozen fry storeroom receiving oral sex from an intern (okay, so there’s no intern program at McDonalds, but stay with me) he would be fired out of hand. No questions asked. And if you’re about to say, “But every President has had affairs in office, it’s just that this one was made public.”, I don’t care. It’s not about sex, it’s about upholding the law.
Clinton also swore an oath to protect our country and uphold the Constitution when he stood on that podium on Inauguration Day. If he took that oath as lightly as he took the one he swore in front of the grand jury, don’t we have something to fear?