Maybe There is Karma: Bill Clinton and Ken Starr


Karma — action, work or deed; it also refers to the spiritual principle of cause and effect where intent and actions of an individual (cause) influence the future of that individual (effect). Good intent and good deed contribute to good karma and future happiness, while bad intent and bad deed contribute to bad karma and future suffering.

Ken Starr, former U.S. Court of Appeals Judge, former U.S. Solicitor General and law school professor, was appointed special prosecutor to investigate Whitewater, a Clinton family investment that went sour. He went far beyond that, of course, eventually pursuing the impeachment of President Clinton over lying about sex. Despite an extended, multi-million dollar investigation, Starr turned up no evidence of Clinton misconduct regarding Whitewater.

Starr did turn up the Lewinsky sex scandal, accusing President Clinton of lying about a collateral issue, whether he’d had sex with an intern. The impeachment effort failed, too.

The bad political taste from Starr’s perceived abuse of his original charge as special prosecutor caused Congress to allow the enabling legislation to lapse. That’s a lot of bad karma.

Starr went on to be the President of Baylor University. He served as President of that Baptist university for six years until May 2016, when Baylor’s board of trustees fired him for failing to respond to . . .  wait for it . . . a sex scandal.

In 2015 a former Baylor Bears football player, Sam Ukwuachu, was convicted of sexual assault of another Baylor student. The trial called attention to Baylor’s handling of sexual assaults charges after the judge referred to Baylor’s investigation of Ukwuachu as “insufficient” and barred the defense from relying on the internal report during the trial. In response to intense public pressure, the Baylor Board of Regents hired a law firm to perform an external review of Baylor’s handling of sexual assaults. Irony and more karma.

The investigative report, summarized by the board of trustees in a public “Findings of Facts” document, stated that Baylor failed to timely and effectively implement Title IX, that Baylor administrators actively discouraged reporting of sexual assaults, and described numerous failures to address reported sexual assaults by the athletics department. Basically, the report found that the Baylor University brass protected its highly lucrative football program by concealing the criminal conduct of football players, at the expense of victims of those football players sexual predation.

In response to the report, the Board of Regents fired Starr but allowed him to stay on as Chancellor and as a law school professor. Starr resigned as Chancellor shortly thereafter and resigned as law professor in August 2016.

If current polling is accurate, Bill Clinton is soon to return to the White House, albeit as First Gentleman and not as President. Starr, on the other hand, guilty of a great deal more than lying about sex, and having harmed a great many people, including a number of Baylor coeds, has been fired and disgraced.

It’s enough to make you believe in karma.

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