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A Reasonable Compromise

Civics question: 

Andrew Johnson and _________ were the only two U.S. presidents to be impeached by the House of Representatives.

And so will read President Clintonís epitaph. No Health Care struggles. No struggles against partisan politics. Only scandal on top of scandal on top of scandal. This isnít exactly what a man who dreamed of becoming president thought would be his legacy.

With the House having passed two of the four articles of impeachment, perjury and obstruction of justice, by the slimmest of margins, 228 and 221 of 433 respectively, the easiest way out for the president is still resignation.

That said, now that the matter is set to go before a Senate trial, there is still another solution. Itís a solution that the hopelessly partisan debate would not allow: Censure.

Though Clinton has never backed down from a fight, one would hope that the president could put the best interests of the country and his party before his job. If he evades conviction by the Senate, which is very likely, he would in essence, get off scot free. A censure, at the very least, would force him to come to terms with his illegalities.

Hard-line Republican Senators will push for conviction. Moderate Republicans will at least go through the motions of a trial. They will be most responsive to a compromise, and unlike House Republicans, will put their personal vendettas aside and push for an end to a scandal that has gone on long enough.

President Clinton should not be convicted. If he will not resign, then the Senate should seriously consider a censure, one that is more than a slap on the wrist.

The holidays are about more than just presents

Playing chicken with a Suburban to get a parking space, wandering through a department store, endlessly searching for the perfect gift for a hated relative and waiting hours in line to purchase the last Furby in the store, which you attained by tackling "Grandma," are some of the hassles that accompany the holiday season. But they shouldnít have to.

No matter what religion you practice or what you choose to celebrate during the holiday season, this should be a time to spend with friends and family. 

It should be a time to remember where you come from, where you are now, and who helped you along the way.

Presents are only icing on the cake. So what if your mother gives you yet another pair of those bobby socks that went out with the í80s? So what if you receive another hideous plaid shirt reminiscent of Paul Bunyan with his blue ox, Babe?

The original idea behind gift giving was to give a present to someone from the heart. It didnít have to be the latest toy or an expensive piece of jewelry. It could be something as simple as a homemade ornament, a beaded necklace or a hand-stitched shirt. 

So, if you are one of those people fighting over the last Furby, keep in mind what the spirit of the holiday season is really about: giving from the heart, not from the pocketbook.

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