Pubdate: Thu, 26 August 1999
Source: Washington Post (DC)
Copyright: 1999 The Washington Post Company
Address: 1150 15th Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20071
Author: William Cline


The uproar about whether George W. Bush used cocaine highlights the primary
Republican indiscretion of middle and old age: hypocrisy. Whether Mr. Bush
was a youthful user of illegal drugs is not the core issue, especially with
a constituency that has largely forgiven him, innocent or guilty. The
correct issue is that Republican criminals who weren't caught now support
and apply Draconian penalties against our present youth for indiscretions of
all sorts.

Further, their hypocrisy confuses priorities. Most drug abusers and
adulterers do well in later life. Some are qualified to be president. The
Republican obsession with lesser indiscretions obscures those that are more
dangerous -- those that undermine our capitalism and freedom.

I would rather see more attention paid to bankers who launder money for
Russian criminals and to campaign contributors who really are paying bribes
than to Gov. Bush's rumored drug use. And if some Republicans are so
concerned about the privacy of Gov. Bush's indiscreet youth, are they
equally concerned about government and commercial intrusions into the
privacy of every other American? I think not. We now have drugs against
impotence. It's too bad there are no drugs against the Republican
indiscretion of middle and old age.

William Cline, Washington

- ---
MAP posted-by: Jo-D