Many years ago a friend who was studying to be a rabbi put forth an interesting situation and asked my opinion. This was the scenario he presented.
You’re driving home on your way from work. As you pause at a stop light, you see smoke rise in the sky. It appears to be coming from an area where your home is located. Almost in an involuntary way you exclaim, “Oh my God. I hope that isn’t my house that’s on fire.”
The question my friend posed was, is that a moral thing either to think or say?
Naturally, the basis for this conundrum is that you certainly don’t want your family, your home or your possessions to be in danger. But the implication is that you are perfectly content to be spared that loss and let it fall at the feet of one of your neighbors.
My answer was that even though I might have made the statement it didn’t imply that I wanted someone else to suffer a loss. I simply hoped that there was nothing more than a garbage can on fire and that neither my nor my neighbors’ houses were threatened.
Over the years there’s been more smoke surrounding Hillary Clinton than can be seen at all the restaurants in the country which specialize in barbecue. And as the adage goes, “Where’s there’s smoke, there’s fire”. Unless you listen to Ms. Clinton and her camp. I’m startled that wherever she goes the locals don’t declare that it’s Christmas for all the driven snow she brings with her.
Being a lawyer, Ms. Clinton naturally is drawn to a defense which is based on the law – and the fact that none of the allegations leveled against her have been “proven” – yet. Part of the reason may be that among other allegations that have most recently surfaced about her method of doing business as Secretary of State she may have destroyed or attempted to destroy the evidence which might convict her if this matter actually goes to a court of law.
The latest flak is coming from the fact that in a small sample of emails which two IG’s randomly chose, ten percent were found to contain material that they determined contained “Classified” or “Top Secret” information. And now the legalisms begin. The Clinton camp is claiming that while those emails are “now” thus categorized, they weren’t at the time they were sent to then Secretary of State Clinton. Of course, all of this would be moot if Ms. Clinton had followed protocol and conducted her correspondence on a government server. But even that is beside the point.
Let’s think about the position she held for four years. She was the second most important person in government who had responsibility for foreign affairs and ultimately safety at home as it might be imperiled by groups like ISIS. One has to ask the question, was she so cavalier in maintaining an unsecured server because the only correspondence she anticipated receiving was the “Daily Sudoku Puzzle” or because she was exchanging cookie recipes? If that is the case, it’s no wonder that our foreign policy during her watch has turned into such a shambles.
On the other hand, one would expect that a functioning Secretary of State would be privy to information, some of which would have been sensitive if not downright dangerous should it fall into the wrong hands. Wouldn’t a rational person, entrusted with such a responsible position do everything in her power to make sure that information was secure?
So whether or not Ms. Clinton broke the law and might be prosecuted for dereliction of duty there is a far more fundamental question which anyone who is thoughtful should ask. Is a person who exhibits such poor judgment as Secretary of State the kind of person we want in the Oval Office?
That’s not a matter of partisanship. It’s a matter of common sense.