Monica Lewinsky showed us all how we should act when someone violates boundaries: Get up and walk out.
On Monday night, Lewinsky got up and walked out of a live interview in the Jerusalem Convention Center when Channel 2 news anchor Yonit Levi asked a question that Lewinsky said they previously agreed was off limits. You can watch the video here.
She didn’t scream, cry, or throw a fit. The boundaries had been violated and so she left. Interview over.
She didn’t worry that she was making the interviewer feel uncomfortable, or that the event planners now had time they needed to fill.
According to Lewinsky, she and Levi had agreed before the interview that the question about former President Clinton was not to be asked. If this is, indeed, the case, Levi was counting on social pressures to make Lewinsky address the question.
Lewinsky described what happened as follows:
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21 thoughts on “Want to Stop Discrimination and Harassment? Be More Like Monica Lewinsky”
Elizabeth Smart did the same thing several years ago. To refresh memories (or to tell others something new), Elizabeth Smart was the girl kidnapped, at the age of 14, from her bedroom and held captive for 9 months.
In her book, she says that she will not repeat stories about her sexual abuse as she doesn’t want to give those who seek such the thrill of what they are seeking. (sorry, that paraphrasing comes across somewhat awkward)
In an interview, she was asked to tell about such and she told the interviewer that they agreed before hand to not discuss that – and then promptly got up and walked out.
Good for BOTH of them – standing up for themselves! Bravo!
Maybe kind of trivial, but, I do hope that their lawyers find a way for them to still get paid for the interviews as they are NOT the ones who breached the contract.
Good for her! Elizabeth Smart is one impressive woman as well.
And yet Monica Lewinsky didn’t seem to see boundaries being crossed and walk out in the White House –
She made some bad choices 20 years ago. She’s changed.
I hope no one still judges me by what stupid choices I made 20 years ago.
She was young, naive, and (thought she was) in love. She has more than paid for her part in this. Leave her alone.
And, why does Bill Clinton get to be the folksy, former-president, good guy and she is still slut shamed?
And he was the boss. If this had been a company, and I’d been the HR person, he would have been the one in trouble.
Also, what EHRL says.
Oh, please, Monica Lewinsky? If Lewinsky had not “flashed her thong” at President Clinton — as she bragged to Barbara Walters many years ago — none of us would even know who she was. Now, she is claiming that she was victimized. She was wrong, as was Clinton; and he certainly should have known better and should have resisted the temptation. Both have paid mightily for their errors, and neither can be considered a role model for their actions during their brief dalliance. Since then, both have gone on to do other things and have — at least partially — publicly redeemed themselves. But, neither should be surprised at still being asked about it. In this particular instance, I note that Levi has denied the prior agreement that Lewinsky is claiming, or that any boundaries were crossed.
How did he pay?
He was impeached and will forever have this asterisk on his Presidency and character.
Uh huh. And he continues to be paid to talk and people give money to his foundation and he is invited to good parties and nobody asks him about Monica.
Not seeing that he’s suffered. Not in the way she has.
Even if she did flash her thong at him – I do not approve of that – ALL HE HAD TO DO WAS SAY NO. He was older. Married. The most powerful man in the world. With that power comes some responsibility.
Actually, Bill Clinton was asked about the Lewinsky matter very recently, and the awkwardness of his response made headlines. I agree that — morally — he was more culpable than Monica, since he was married. Also, more foolish; it was incredibly risky behavior. He met JFK at a young age and said that inspired him to want to become President. Perhaps, he modelled himself too closely on JFK. Times — and public standards — change. JFK’s peccadillos were widely-known, but not reported by the press, which protected him (as well as numerous other philandering Presidents). Decades later — by the time Clinton was POTUS — that would not be the case. I’m sure Monica suffered, but she also benefitted — capitalized — on her fame, by coming out with a line of handbags, writing and other endeavors keeping herself in the public eye.
He will always have this asterisk because of HIS behavior – including the string of other women he dealt with. Even if you ignore all of the non-proven accusations (even the most credible ones) there is a string of women other than his wife that he messed around with.
And, had he not lied about the affair, he wouldn’t have gotten impeached, either. Because he wasn’t impeached for the affair, he was impeached for lieing about it under oath.
I did not know Clinton was impeached. Where did you hear that?
Um… I think there might have been a news story or two about it…
She was super dumb at 22. She’s grown up.
I wouldn’t call her “super dumb;” she’s turned her peccadillos into a cottage industry and stretched out her “15 minutes of fame” into decades. But, it certainly seems wrong for her to now be attempting to re-characterize herself as some kind of hapless victim. Unlike Clinton, she wasn’t married; nor, was she is a superior position of power. But, she — certainly — was of age, and was the aggressor in the relationship.
Again – even if she started it, he did not have to join her.
I am pretty sure this is not how she wants to be remembered and that she would be happy to be a normal person with a normal job. He has been able to move on completely, but this is what people want to talk to her about.
Aggressor? That’s utterly ridiculous. Flashing her thing was forward, but it’s hard to call it aggressive. And, the President was under ZERO pressure to follow up on that forward move. In fact, if it was in the least bit bothersome to him, all he needed to do was to tell an aid “Keep that twit away from me.” And she WOULD have been kept faaaar away from him.
Well, I guess it’s just a matter of judgment. Frankly, if someone “flashed their thong” — that is, exposed their bare buttocks — to me at work, I would consider it grounds for termination, if not outright criminal (Indecent Exposure). But, maybe I’m just out-of-step with modern workplace morality.
Monica was 22 years old, Bill was pushing 50. He went on to make millions giving speeches and writing books, she had to go off to Europe to escape the notoriety, saying “the shame sticks to you like tar.” She was a subordinate, he was the boss. Yes, she flirted with him, but he should have not responded except to have her removed from her position. She bore the brunt of the fallout in her personal, professional and financial lives. When he dies, the Lewinsky affair will be mentioned but not the focus of his obituary. When she dies, the Clinton affair will be the lede. She got a lot of ridicule and contempt, with even her last name synonymous for oral sex. He got, for the most part, the “boys will be boys” pass.
So saying, I think it’s naive and perhaps a little disingenuous of Monica not to expect that the main reason she is being interviewed is because of the Clinton affair. I think it’s great she walked off, though.
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