Our need for dignity has not been filled by this...

Letters to the Editor

October 12, 1998

Our need for dignity has not been filled by this president

In the editorial "Panel forges ahead despite peoples will" (Oct. 6), former President Ford's solution of having President Clinton stand in the well of the House of Representatives to be rebuked is reviewed.

The editorial appears to approve of the solution, stating, "Mr. Ford appreciates the nation's desperate need for dignity."

Because some people involved with this issue have an interest in precise definitions, I thought I would look up the definition of dignity. "Webster's New College Dictionary" defines dignity as the respect and honor associated with an important position.

My question is: How do you define dignity? Is it a married man who has admitted to engaging in oral sex in his office with someone not his wife? Or maybe it is someone who has admitted to lying to his family, friends and nation. (Well, actually the president said he only misled them.) Is that dignity?

Should we as a nation require our leaders to have a level of dignity? Should a leader be someone who is one of the best persons our country can produce with a high level of respect and honor for the position he or she holds and for the people?

David C. Hill

Baltimore

I have always thought The Sun was truthful. Your editorial ("Panel forges ahead, despite people's will," Oct. 6) really hit the nail right on the head.

This is a vendetta against President Clinton that has been going on for four years. I don't think he committed a crime against the people of America. After it was out, he told the truth like anyone would.

Mr. Clinton did nothing that was impeachable.

Rocco Rotondo Jr.

Baltimore

Your editorials have been as partisan as members of Congress, but the last statement Oct. 6 is surprising.

You stated that Gerald Ford appreciates the nation's need for dignity and that members of Congress need to learn from him. More so than Congress, it is Mr. Clinton who should learn about dignity -- personal as well as the nation's need for it -- and resign.

John M. Dennis

Towson

Clinton's punishment more than that of worst offenders

For those who wish to punish the president, consider this: The worst convicted criminals in this country don't have to face the humiliation of having the American public read intimate details of their transgressions in newspapers.

Even the video of President Clinton's testimony is now being hawked on TV for $19.95. In a utopian society, we might have the luxury of spending all of this time, money and effort to explore these "crimes," but this is the real world and we cannot afford this insanity.

There are real issues facing real people and to ignore them, in favor of partisan inquisitions, is the true crime.

As for the cry of moral leadership, since when do we look to our politicians for moral guidance? Poverty in a land of plenty is immoral. Racism is immoral. The hypocrisy surrounding this Clinton mess is also immoral.

Donna Sherman

Baltimore

Give Clinton a trial and then convict him

Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch predicts that President Clinton will not be convicted if impeached because Democratic senators will vote "not guilty." The presaged assumption being that Republican senators will vote "guilty."

The public should take comfort in knowing that most of the judges who may hear and decide the trial have already reached a verdict. Sort of reminds me of Josef Stalin's show trials of the 1930s.

Quentin D. Davis

Aberdeen

Hillary Clinton's mirror reflects stand-by woman

"Backward, turn backward, O Time, in thy flight: make me a child again just for tonight." No, not a child, but a cartoonist. I would do a cartoon of Hillary Clinton looking into a mirror, and caption it: "Mirror, mirror on the wall, I am Tammy Wynette after all."

Mary F. Peterson

Ellicott City

Starr Chamber of the 1900s hasn't changed name much

The Star Chamber existed in England during the 1500s and 1600s. Its members were appointed by the king and drawn from among his advisers. Its primary purpose was to bring to justice persons too powerful or too highly placed to be tried by common law.

While righteous at first, it rapidly became corrupt. King Charles I was notorious for using it to punish or dispose of his enemies. It used no jury and obtained its convictions by duress and torture. Finally, England had enough, and it was terminated by the Long Parliament.

It is ironic that in its existence today; not even the name has changed. The transition occurred more rapidly, but otherwise it remains identical in every detail. This proves, once again, if we do not learn from history, we will be condemned to repeat it.

Lawrence A. Battaglia

Edgewood

Republicans and counsel undermine fair process

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