The West Wing
from the TV series created by Aaron Sorkin
President Bartlet (Martin Sheen): I like how you call homosexuality an abombination.
Jenna Jacobs: I don't say homosexuality is an abomination, Mr. President, the Bible does.
President Bartlet: Yes, it does. Leviticus.
Jenna Jacobs: 18:22.
President Bartlet: Chapter and verse. I wanted to ask you a couple of questions while I have you here. I'm interested in selling my youngest daughter into slavery as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. She's a Georgetown sophmore, speaks fluent Italian, always cleared the table when it was her turn. What would a good price for her be? While thinking about that, can I ask another? My Chief of Staff Leo McGarry insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly says he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself or is it okay to call the police? Here's one that's really important because we've got a lot of sports fans in this town: touching the skin of a dead pig makes one unclean. Leviticus 11:7. If they promise to wear gloves, can the Washington Redskins still play football? Can Notre Dame? Can West Point? Does the whole town really have to be together to stone my brother John for planting different crops side by side? Can I burn my mother in a small family gathering for wearing garments made from two different threads? "Think about that, will you? Oh, and one last thing. You may have mistaken this for your meeting of the ignorant tight-asses club but in this building, when the President stands, nobody sits.
(The President's daughter, Zoey, objects at the degree of her protection by the Secret Service)
President Bartlet (Martin Sheen): My getting killed would be bad enough, but that is not the nightmare scenario. The nightmare scenario, sweetheart, is you getting kidnapped! You go out to a bar or a party in some club and you get up and you go to the restroom and somebody comes from behind and puts his hand across your mouth and drags you out the back door. You're so petrified you don't even notice the bodies of a few Secret Service agents laying on the ground with bullet holes in their heads. Then you're driven away in the car. It's a big party with lots of noise and lots of people coming and going, and it's a half hour before someone says: "Hey, where's Zoey?" It's another fifteen minutes before the first phone call. It's another hour and a half before anyone even THINKS to shut down all the airports! Now we're off to the races! You're tied to a chair in a cargo shack somewhere in the middle of Uganda and I am told that I have 72 hours to get Israel to free 460 imprisoned terrorists. So I'm on the phone pleading with Binyamin and he's saying: "I'm sorry, Mr. President, but Israel simply does not negotiate with terrorists, period, it's the only way we can survive." So now we got a new problem because this country no longer has a Commander-in-chief, but a father going out of his mind because his little girl is in a shack somewhere in the middle of Uganda with a gun to her head! Do you get it?!
Zoey Bartlet (Elisabeth Moss): Yes.
President Bartlet (Martin Sheen): You're a son of a bitch you know that? She bought her first new car and you hit her with a drunk driver. What, is that supposed to be funny? "You can't conceive nor can I the strangeness of the mercy of God," says Graham Green. I think I know who's ass he was kissing there, 'cause I think your're just vindictive. What was Josh Lyman, the warning shot? That was my son, what did I ever do to yours but praise his glory and praise his name? There's a tropical storm that's gaining speed and power. They say we haven't had a storm this bad since you took out that Tender ship of mine in the North Atlantic last year, sixty-eight crew. You know what a Tender ship does? It fixes the other ships, and, delivers the mail, that's all it can do. Gracias Tibiago Domine. Yes, I lied. It was a sin, I've committed many sins. Have I displeased you, you feckless thug? Three point eight billion new jobs that wasn't good? Bailed out Mexico, Increased foreign trade, 30 million new acres of land for conservation, put Mendoza on the bench, we're not fighting a war, I've raised 3 children. That's not enough to buy me out of the doghouse?
Hace credam a deo pio? A deo iusto, a deo scico? Cruciatus in crucem. Tuus in terra sertvus, nuntius fui. Officium perfecti. Cruciatus in crucem. Eas in crucem.
(Translation: Am I really to believe that these are the acts of a loving God? A just God? A wise God? To hell with your punishments. I was your servant here on Earth. And I spread your word and I did your work. To hell with your punishments. To hell with you.)
(The story so far: Zoet Bartlet (the President's daughter) was abducted from a loud party on the night of her college graduation and is still missing. Toby proposed to his pregnant ex-wife Andy yet again and she turned him down, saying he was "Too sad" for her to be with him. He spoke to Leo about it and Leo assured him that it was "a mortal lock" he would be a good father. So now, he is having a private moment with his new babies in an empty exam room.
(Note: The woman (Molly) Toby refers to was one of Zoey's Secret Service detail who was shot and killed during the abduction.))
Toby: I didn't realize babies came with hats. (pause) You guys crack me up. You don't have jobs, you can't walk or speak a language, you don't have a dollar in your pockets but you got yourselves a hat so everything's fine. (pause) I don't want to alarm you or anything, but...I'm Dad. (beat) And son, for you, this'll be the last time I pass the buck but I just think it should be clear from the get-go that it was Mom who named you Huckleberry. I guess she was feeling like life doesn't present enough challenges to overcome on its own. (to his daughter) And honey, you've got a name now too. Your mom and I named you after an incredibly brave, uh, incredibly brave woman, really not all that much older than you. Your name is Molly. (beat) Huck and Molly. (beat) I know you can't understand me, but it's the deepness of my voice -- (deepening his voice) -- I read that the deepness of my voice is appealing... (beat) Did you just smile when I said 'deepness of my voice'? (pause) So what do I do? Well you're gonna need food and clothes and doctors and dentists, so there's that. Also, should you have any questions along the way. And I'll be doing stuff like this, Huck, 'cause you're leaking a little bit out of your mouth there.
(Toby dabs his handkerchief around Huck's mouth...and now Toby's son does something that blows his mind.)
Toby: You holding my finger, son? (pause) Molly, your brother's holding my hand, you wanna hold my hand?
(Toby gives his other hand to Molly)
Toby: Hm. (beat) This isn't gonna mean anything to you...but Leo was right. (beat) Leo was right.
President Bartlet: Abbey told me to not drive while I was upset and she was right. She was right yesterday when she told me not to get on that damn bicycle while I was upset, but I did it anyway, and I guess I was just about as angry as Iíve ever been in my life. It seems my granddaughter, Annie, had given an interview in one of the teen magazines. And somewhere between movie stars and make-up tips, she talked about her feelings on a womanís right to choose. Now Annie, all of 12, has always been precocious, but sheís got a good head on her shoulders and I like it when she uses it, so I couldnít understand it when her mother called me in tears yesterday. I said, "Elizabeth, whatís wrong?" She said, "Itís Annie." Now I love my family and Iíve read my bible from cover to cover so I want you to tell me, from what part of the Holy Scripture do you suppose the Lambs of God drew their Divine inspiration when they sent my 12 year-old granddaughter a Raggedy Ann doll with a knife stuck through its throat? (pause) Youíll denounce these people, Al. Youíll do it publicly. And until you do, you can all get your fat asses out of my White House.
Congressman Matthew Santos (Jimmy Smits): I know you like to use that word 'liberal' as if it were a crime.
Senator Arnold Vinick (Alan Alda): No. I'm sorry. I shouldn't have used that word. I know Democrats think liberal is a bad word. So bad you had to change it. What do you call yourselves now, progressives? Is that it?
Santos: It's true. Republicans have tried to turn liberal into a bad word. Well, liberals ended slavery in this country.
Vinick: A Republican President ended slavery.
Santos: Yes, a liberal Republican, Senator. What happened to them? They got run out of your party. What did liberals do that was so offensive to the liberal party? I'll tell you what they did. Liberals got women the right to vote. Liberals got African-Americans the right to vote. Liberals created Social Security and lifted millions of elderly people out of poverty. Liberals ended segregation. Liberals passed the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act. Liberals created Medicare. Liberals passed the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act. What did Conservatives do? They opposed them on every one of those things every one. So when you try to hurl that label at my feet, 'Liberal,' as if it were something to be ashamed of, something dirty, something to run away from, it won't work, Senator, because I will pick up that label and I will wear it as a badge of honor.
(the audience vigorously applauds.)
Kudos and many thanks to SWEJ321, Templeton, Lou, and Terrence (respectively) for these monologues, it is very much appreciated.
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