Why we hate lawyers

August 25, 1998

This is why people hate lawyers.

Bill Clinton and his aides are planning their legal strategy in the wake of the Lewinsky tug boat. Having taken care to carefully choose words and phrases that carry dual meanings, we are told Clinton will be able to deny committing perjury and obstructing justice.

Common folk know from his own lips that Clinton lied. They know that he lied in the Paula Jones deposition; he lied to the nation; he lied (so he says) to his wife and daughter. All those trusted aides were lied to as well. So the issue of whether Clinton is a liar is settled. He is.

Think of it, though. Clinton's modern day social studies lesson is that lying is okay as long as it is done carefully, strategically and to accomplish political purposes. From "I cannot tell a lie," we have progressed to "I lie carefully."

It is amazing. Really.

Polls tell us that Americans are buying into the lie. Close to 70 percent of us think it is time to close the investigative book on Clinton and leave him alone to do the job we hired him to do. Granted polls are subject to the latest media pabulum, but in this instance, many of the media mouths have themselves been verbally whip lashing Clinton, tired of his lies.

As for Clinton's technically legal lies, they are an indicator of decades of bad laws being used to solve human problems. Today's ethic clearly has deteriorated from the Ten Commandments' high ideal to the United States Code. And the USC's ideal is the lowest common ethical denominator.

So our public ethic is defined by our public laws. Clinton said so in his Executive Order 13083 when he wrote that our moral, legal and political character are defined by the federal constitution and acts of Congress. Establishing ethics in this manner will always result in two truths: the standard of acceptance of ethical behavior will diminish; people will need even more external controls put in place to remedy their bad behavior.

If we write off Clinton's strategic lying as morally acceptable, it is because we have been trained to accept this diminished ethic. Consider O.J. Simpson. Legal manipulation won his case, not truth.

Living under the yoke of external boundaries as the arbiter of a common ethic will destroy us as a nation of free people.

To argue with Clinton's Executive Order, the laws passed by Congress reflect the moral decisions of the American people, not the other way around. When the people of Massachusetts endorse Barney Frank through reelection, they are making a moral statement.

The evidence is in, however, and it is not good.

Moral relevancy being the rule of the day has left us in this situation: anyone who can tell a lie within the strictures of the law cannot be prosecuted, despite the sin of lying.

There you have it. Lying is sinful. Accept that as our ethic and the entire ethical level of our legal system will rise. That word "sin" is so troublesome, though, in a society entrapped by hedonism and materialism where getting caught is the only unpardonable sin.

Oddly, though, sin is forgivable, when properly confessed and repented. Parsing words in an ethical slew designed to perpetuate one's political legacy may result in survival - see Clinton - but it ends in spiritual death.

And if survival becomes the highest ethic, then we have come full circle in America where might makes right. Individual liberty, then, is gone and eventually we will be forced to accept the lie, even when we finally realize it does make a difference.

My conclusion?

For once in our modern times, let us judge a man based on the truth, not his strategic lies, and put our survival as a free people above that of a politician. Bill Clinton must go, soon.

Author - Speaker - teacher