In his four years at the prestigious Massachusetts prep school, Phillips Andover Academy, future President George W. Bush proudly displayed the even then controversial Confederate Stars and Bars flag on his residence hall wall. One might have thought that the Bush family, as aristocratic as they come in America, hailed from the deep South rather than coming from New England. To be sure, George W. spent much of his life in Texas once his father got into the oil business in that state.
I have not seen any comments from the former President about the flag controversy in South Carolina and elsewhere in the South. This may reflect his understandable reluctance to get involved in his younger brother Jeb’s president campaign.
As for Jeb, he waffled, just as he has about climate change and so much else. Not quite a Profile in Courage, but then the John F. Kennedy Library gave that once coveted award to father George H.W. Bush this past year. Why? Because the first President Bush changed his policy after realizing in the middle of his single term that his famous Republican convention line about not raising taxes–“Read my lips”–couldn’t be adhered to and keep the country on a sensible financial course.
When one compares George H. W. Bush receiving an award that used to represent genuine courage rather than crass political expediency, one must ask: when will his son George W. get his own Profile in Courage? For removing the Stars and Bars if he still has it at his Texas ranch?