- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 19, 2002

I feel sorry for Monica Lewinsky, but not in the ways that she apparently feels sorry for herself (“Monica talks on HBO,” Jan. 18).

Miss Lewinsky laments her notoriety, what she believes are common misconceptions about her and the unsavory jokes about her, which she believes are “cruel.” Miss Lewinsky's real problems, however, are much deeper.

Miss Lewinsky has not and does not appear to recognize that what she did was wrong. In interview after interview, she treats moral and ethical standards as individual or cultural standards, as opposed to absolute and universal standards. In this respect, it is frightening to see how much her outlook on life resembles that of former President Bill Clinton.

Miss Lewinsky, like Mr. Clinton during the latter part of his presidency, appears to be genuinely perplexed when people look upon her negatively for things “that a lot of people in the world do.”

This outlook on ethics is painfully sad. It assumes that if many people do something, it makes it OK and that she shouldn't be singled out. This is a devastating ethical standard. (I hope Miss Lewinsky wouldn't argue that because many people drink and drive, it is OK to do so.)

Human beings are not, as Miss Lewinsky assumes, the ultimate creators and definers of ethics and morality. As the actions of both Mr. Clinton and Miss Lewinsky eloquently demonstrate, in demoting the origin of ethical standards from divine to human, man inevitably discards those standards due to his flawed nature.



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