[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1997, Book II)]
[October 30, 1997]
[Pages 1457-1458]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]

Remarks on Unveiling the STARBRIGHT World On-Line Computer Network
October 30, 1997

    The President. Now, as you can hear, I'm a little hoarse, but I do 
want to say that was brilliant. [Laughter] If you can shift the heat 
like that, you should go to Congress. I want to thank Ricky and Mikey 
and Lauren and Vanessa, thank my good friend Steven Spielberg. Thank 
you, General Schwarzkopf, for your outstanding leadership. You've got a 
very important battle here on your hands, and I'm sure you're going to 
win it.
    I'd also like to thank Congressman Lou Stokes and Congresswoman Pat 
Danner for being here. I thought I'd take and make a little fun of the 
Congress so they'll go back and tell it, and I'll be in trouble again 
this afternoon. [Laughter] I'd like to thank Ned Zechman and all the 
people from the Children's National Medical Center here.
    As you can hear, I'm a little hoarse. The Chinese state visit and 
the change in the weather have taken a little of my voice away, so I've 
asked the Vice President to come with me and give the speech. And I'm 
going to introduce him in a minute, but let me just say I cannot tell 
you how important I think what STARBRIGHT is doing is. General 
Schwarzkopf and Steven Spielberg have already talked about it.
    What we're trying to do in the Government is to hook up every 
classroom and library to the Internet by year 2000. But we also want to 
make sure all the children's hospitals are there. These children deserve 
them. And we need for them to be a part of this emerging network of 
learning and playing and growing. And as the General said, it looks like 
it's a healthy thing to do as well. So we're glad to be here. Mostly 
we're here just to say thank you to the foundation, to all of you, and 
to say we want to do our part.
    I think it's appropriate that the Vice President is here to speak 
instead of me because he was talking about the information superhighway 
before I had even gotten an electric typewriter.
    The Vice President.

[At this point, Vice President Al Gore made brief remarks. The President 
then took questions from children using the network.]

    Q. We would like to ask you some questions. [Laughter]
    The President. Okay.
    Q. What kind of food do you like to eat?
    The President. What kind of food?
    Q. Yes.
    The President. I like fruit. [Laughter] I like granola. [Laughter] I 
like chicken--[laughter]--and I like all kinds of vegetables. And it 
would be easier for me to tell you what kind of food I don't like to 
eat. [Laughter] It would be a

[[Page 1458]]

shorter list. [Laughter] Peaches are my favorite thing.
    Q. Mr. President, as you were younger, were your dreams ever to be a 
President, always?
    The President. No, not always. First I wanted to be a musician; then 
I wanted to be a doctor; then I actually wanted to be a journalist once. 
[Laughter] But I was always interested in politics when I was younger, 
and I thought I might like to go into it. And I was very fortunate, so I 
got to be President. But I thought about it, but it wasn't like my 
lifetime ambition from the time I was 10 years old.
    Q. Did you always want to be Vice President? [Laughter]
    The Vice President. Yes. You know, to children all around this 
country--I've always wanted to be Vice President. [Laughter]
    The President. It's not a bad job. [Laughter]
    General H. Norman Schwarzkopf. We're really getting into some very 
dangerous ground here, so I think we better--[laughter]--better 
terminate this thing. Let me just say----
    Q. Mr. President----
    General Schwarzkopf. ----you've just seen the power of STARBRIGHT--
    Q. Mr. President--[laughter]----
    The Vice President. We always have trouble ending press conferences. 
    The President. Yes, I know.
    General Schwarzkopf. But you've just seen the power of this system--
    Q. What's your favorite sport to watch or play?
    General Schwarzkopf. We'll take one more from Fort Worth.
    The President. What's my favorite sport?
    Q. Okay, what's your favorite sport you like to watch or play?
    The President. My favorite sport to watch is probably basketball. My 
favorite sport to play is golf. I'm too slow to play basketball very 
well. [Laughter]

Note: The President spoke at 2:37 p.m. at the Children's Hospital 
National Medical Center. In his remarks, he referred to Ricky Adams, 
Mikey Butler, Lauren Alexanderson, and Vanessa Gonzalez, STARBRIGHT 
Pioneer Children; motion picture director Steven Spielberg, chairman, 
and Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, USA (Ret.), capital campaign chairman, 
STARBRIGHT Foundation; and Edwin K. Zechman, Jr., president and chief 
executive officer, Children's National Medical Center. The STARBRIGHT 
World on-line computer network connected the Nation's largest children's 
hospitals to the Internet to enable seriously ill children to meet, 
play, and communicate with one another. A tape was not available for 
verification of the content of these remarks.