Observing US:
A column about America,
by Marylaine Block
originally published by
Fox News Online, 1998-2000

#15, September 23, 1998


by Marylaine Block

Iíve read as little as I could possibly read about líaffaire Monica, and all but shut the television off entirely so I wonít have it shoved into my face against my will, but I still know far more than I ever wanted to know about your sex organs. In fact, up to this point, Iíd lived a long and happy life without ever having to think about a Presidentís sex organs.

You know, I supported you for a long time. I didnít care for everything you did, and I think youíve been one of the worst things that ever happened to the first amendment, but I thought your heart was in the right place. I thought you genuinely did care about the people who worked hard and played by the rules. I agreed with you that weíre all in this together, and that we canít afford to waste a single person.

To me, this country is about opportunity for everybody. Thatís why I appreciated your increasing the earned income tax credit, so people who worked full time and were still poor got some of their tax money back. I liked your pushing the Brady Bill through Congress, and I really liked your community reinvestment programs.

Of course, with this Congress, you were never going to get any more of your programs through ó- they were going to fight you all the way. After all, they wonít even confirm your most conservative candidates for judges and ambassadors.

But at least when you talked to us on the radio on Saturday, and when you gave important speeches, you had the moral authority of the Presidency behind you. When the news media let us hear what you had to say, your words carried weight.

And we knew you cared about us. When large parts of my town were underwater during the Mississippi flood of 1993, you came with your entire cabinet, and they told our governors and senators what their departments could do to help us rebuild our lives.

When the Kansas City bomb went off, you had the insight to understand how it terrified our children, and you spent a radio address talking directly to them, trying to comfort them and explain the unexplainable.

But that was then. This is now. Because youíve wasted all your gifts and all our hopes.

I agree with you that Kenneth Starr had no right to investigate your private life, that he was on a partisan witch hunt, and that he did terrible things to the rule of law in the process.

But the fact is, you DID do something that was both immoral and stupid.

Granted your little intern seemed more than ready and willing. Granted she threw herself at you.

But a grown-up knows better than to catch. A powerful man who toys with a young female employee is still taking advantage of her, even if she started it. A grown-up would know better than to trust his Presidency to the discretion of a flutter-headed valley girl. If Paris was worth a mass to Henry IV, why wasnít the White House worth a closed zipper to you?

And then you lied about it.

Itís bad that you lied to Hillary, because she didnít deserve the humiliation. Itís worse that you lied to Chelsea, who probably still thought you were a hero. Itís terrible that you looked Americans straight in the face and lied to us.

But the worst thing you did is lie to the people who worked with you. You let them stand up for you day after day, and spend big bucks on lawyers as they were forced to testify in court. You hung them out to dry.

That is more indecent than the sex. Shame on you.

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