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Letters: Clinton's TV confession disappointing

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Posted: Friday, August 28, 1998 1:00 am

We were disappointed in the president's lackluster TV confession. We expected more of an ostentatious spectacle, a drama rivaling the best of Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey.

Think of the president appearing humbly on camera in a monk's robe, sandals and wobbling a staff while supported ably on either side by Billy Graham and Ted Kennedy in scarlet livery as the secret service stands rigidly at parade rest. Behind them the Boston Pops plays the National Anthem as a gallery of top celebrities and super stars throw confetti, provide moral support and strain to hear the first words of contrition.

But the speech? Words, sounding as if they had been written by Horatio Alger Jr. on a bad day, and the manner of their delivery came across as much as heated protest as a confession.

The president, perhaps with his Arkansas naivete, needs to learn first -- that reasonable, rock hard men of the world know that trysts, affairs and assignations while in public office are frowned upon by the good American and still sane hoi polloi and, if unavoidable for any reason whatsoever, should proceed as did others long before him, with the utmost caution and discretion.

And second -- the real difference between casual sex and a life long passion is that casual sex always lasts a little longer.

The president might have done heaps better for himself by tossing the speech and playing Truth or Consequences.

William Perry, Rock Island

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