- The Washington Times - Saturday, February 5, 2000

''It was the only honest thing they said all day," replied Rep. Bob Kerrey to ugly comments purportedly made by hecklers supporters of Al Gore who mocked the Nebraska congressman's artificial leg. A spokesman for Mr. Gore described the comments as "unfortunate" without admitting they were in fact said.

Mr. Kerrey a former Navy SEAL who lost his leg in a firefight in Vietnam and was subsequently awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for bravery has made no secret of his contempt for Bill Clinton's manipulation of truth, and of Al Gore's near-seamless emulation of his master. This has earned him the enmity of his own Democratic Party. But Mr. Kerrey though a Democrat is an honorable man. He does not like liars. And he is not afraid to say so in public.

Bob Kerrey may have left his leg in Vietnam but he learned to walk again. Bill Clinton and his robotic understudy have never overcome their debilitating functional impairment: a chronic inability to tell the truth. Who, then, is the "cripple"?

m SEAT BELT TICKETS AND DONUT DEMERITS: If you asked a traffic cop whether he'd like you supervising his dietary habits and issuing him a ticket for eating a greasy hamburger at lunch he'd probably demure. It's his health, after all. And if he wants to risk high cholesterol and possibly a heart attack down the road, well, that's his business and none of yours. Right?

Well, turn the tables a bit and Officer Friendly's attitude changes. Fail to wear your seat belt and the cop doesn't mind issuing you a ticket even though your failure to wear a seat belt has absolutely nothing whatever to do with the safety of others or your ability to handle your vehicle responsibly. The state and in this case, the State of Virginia thinks it has the right to compel seat belt wearing, at ticket-point, and is working on upgrading the existing law to enable cops to pull motorists over for no other reason than their failure to buckle-up. Under current law, a cop can't pull you over solely for failing to wear your seat belt; he must have another reason to pull you over such as speeding. But on Wednesday, the Virginia House of Delegates approved a change in the law that would let the police pull you over just for the seat belt violation. If it goes all the way, cops will now be able to pester you for even this trivial "violation." With any luck Virginia Gov. James Gilmore will put an end to this silliness and tell the gendarme to mind their own business.

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