Criminalization of sexual relations out of wedlock

Criminalization of sexual intercourse out of marriage

Nobody denies that President Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky was wrong.


To say that president Clinton's did wrong when he had a relation with Monica Lewinsky requires a set of assumptions. The underlying one is: Sex is bad. That is followed by: Sex outside of marriage is really bad. Which is founded on the idea that the primary purpose of marriage is sexual exclusivity, and that sexual exclusivity is the most significant measure of marriage. Then, sex across various social dividing lines - rank, employment level, age - is especially wrong. And then, that people should tell the truth about sex even though it will cost them immense and unforeseeable amounts of trouble. Finally, that the American people actually wanted Bill Clinton to tell the truth about his sex life.

There are better and more noble reasons for marriage. The Clinton marriage appears to be a splendid example of that. They are perfect partners. United in purpose and in support of each other, they inspire one another to think and achieve and grow. Outside of the rather silly area of sex, they have given each other a total, long-lasting loyalty. They have raised a child who is so well-adjusted that she has survived this scandal without once cracking in public. It may very well be a marriage without sex, who knows? But those other values make it seem to me to be an excellent marriage. Clinton made two things clear: that he had had sex outside marriage, and that in public he would uphold the institution of marriage.

Not long ago, homosexuality, interracial sex and dispensing birth control information all were criminal acts. Now the point where sex and politics meet is the belief that sex between a social superior (if male) and a social inferior (if female) must be assumed to be coercive and an abuse. To say that assumes that sex is bad, animal, masculine behaviour in which a good woman would engage only if forced to do so. It is Victorianism in feminist drag, and it has made such relationships civil offences so severe as to destroy careers, incomes and social lives. Specifically, it is only because of this anti-sexuality disguised as the protection of rights that a situation was created in which Mr. Clinton would be called to testify under oath about intimate acts.

President Clinton had to lie about his sex life, it was his contract with the American people, verified by their votes.

(E) Emanations of other problems