Utopian Vision of Married Couples
U.S. President Bill Clinton accompanied his wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton, to a dinner a few days ago at the U.S. Supreme Court honoring the new class of incoming senators. He spent the night not as president, but as a Senator''s spouse. In order to prepare for the event in which his wife changed roles from first lady to senator-elect, wire services reported, Mr. Clinton even had a rehearsal to escort Mrs. Clinton. His effort to become an ordinary citizen supporting his politician-wife is highly admirable. The senator-elect is also said to be writing an autobiography expressing her feelings during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Many publishing companies reportedly rushed to be the printer of the promised upcoming book. If she can help pay off her husband''s debts, which amount to $4 million because of legal expenses during the recent scandals and impeachment crisis, by writing a book, the couple will be demonstrating their marital harmony.
U.S. Vice President Al Gore, who may have lost the recent presidential election even having won the most popular votes, passionately kissed his wife Tipper at the Democratic Party Convention last August. He seemed to be trying to give the impression that his relationship with his wife was different than the marriage of the current presidential couple. He emphasized his image as an exemplary citizen of the United States by that lingering public kiss when he was officially nominated as the Democratic presidential candidate. If Mr. Gore ever becomes involved in a sexual scandal, this famous kiss will become a popular ingredient for press stories. Maybe American politicians are digging a dangerous pit, into which they may later fall, by trying too hard to demonstrate their family values and love for their spouses at all time.In this regard, European politicians are totally different. They never let their families and spouses stand at the front line of their political affairs. The European press also has a principle of not unveiling the stories of politicians involved in extramarital affairs unless the politicians involved speak aloud for morality and ethics. Because of the press''s overall cooperation, the former French president Francois Mitterrand, now deceased, could raise his daughter born outside of his official marriage. Mr. Mitterrand at least never called himself a moralist.
Jean-Paul Sartre, the famous French philosopher, once said his utopian vision of a married couple should be a relationship to benefit each other. The worst marriage ever is an exhausting relationship in which a couple endlessly torments each other. Everyone has their own world, and a mutually balanced relationship between a couple can only be maintained by respecting and supporting the worlds where their partners belong.
by Bae Myung-bok