Eulogies for George H.W. Bush got me to thinking about the current political climate, when every word uttered is taken as a personal affront. In days past, political disagreement did not result in insane vitriol.
I am a Republican, but I am not blinded by this allegiance. I can see the point of view of people who disagree with my ideals. In many cases, liberals and conservatives have similar objectives, but different approaches. When President Bush left office, he left President Bill Clinton a note that concluded, “Your success now is our country’s success. I am rooting hard for you.”
These sentiments, I guess, are considered passe. That’s too bad.
Donald Trump’s attitude and ad hominem attacks often inhibit dialogue, but that doesn’t make his agenda despicable or ignoble. Fairness in trade and border enforcement are principles that many Democrats have embraced in the past. It is almost perverse to oppose these principles simply because Trump has embraced them. I just can’t understand why anyone would be so impudent as to refer to those who advocate enforcing immigration laws as racist or xenophobic, as we see in corners of the internet.
Perhaps sometimes our anger overwhelms discretion. Upon balanced reflection, we might reconsider our opinions of others who might feel differently.
Edward J. Doughty, Blue Point
George H.W. Bush was an American’s American. He had his flaws. Don’t we all? He believed in service, family, fairness and the rule of law. He led us beyond the Cold War, a time of uncharted waters. In tough situations, he decided what was the right thing to do — and suffered the consequences.
Disingenuous politicians now speak about camaraderie, country before party, humility and honor, but the contrast between who Bush was and what we are enduring in politics today is so stark!
But there is a positive aspect. The grifters are citing values many believe are part of our country’s DNA. Deep down, our politicians know what is right. Let’s hope the values expressed about what a treasure President Bush 41 was are never obliterated from our consciousness. As long as they reside somewhere in the recesses, we have a chance!
Bob Detor, Port Washington
It is always laughable and disingenuous when you hear some in the media tell us how they love Republicans after they die, when those politicians can no longer react to their hypocritical comments.
Many in the media fell in love with the late senator and war hero John McCain because he had an ongoing feud with President Donald Trump. But when McCain ran for president in 2008, he was trashed in the media and lost to a first-term U.S. senator who had accomplished nothing important in Congress.
Now with the death of Republican President George H.W. Bush, many in the media want us to believe they loved him. But we see right through them. They ran stories about how Bush was so out of touch that he did not know what a supermarket scanner was. Some people believed the media and Bush could not get re-elected.
Now we’re told that Bush was good for America, while Trump is not. But remember, many in the media hate Trump. Could they be waiting for Trump to kick the bucket before they reluctantly tell us how Trump was great for America?
David Duchatellier, Elmont
During the state funeral for President George H.W. Bush, as he was eulogized so eloquently by one person after another, I was totally struck by the words of former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.
“When George Bush was president of the United States of America, every single head of government in the world knew that they were dealing with a gentleman, a genuine leader, one who was distinguished, resolute and brave,” Mulroney said.
Sadly for America, the nations of the world, and for people everywhere who seek freedom, happiness and a better quality of life, Bush was 180 degrees the opposite of the current occupant of the White House.
Mike Solomon, Northport
The passing of George H.W. Bush is sadly noteworthy in its relativity to the current situation at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Regardless of one’s political persuasions, Bush was a class act. Modesty, empathy and understanding framed his political discourse as well as his life. He was not one to bully, mock or exploit what was politically expedient.
Indeed, to the dismay of many of his campaign chairmen over the years, he at times refused to capitalize on the story of how he was shot down and rescued at sea as a World War II pilot.
Personally, I disagreed with many of his policies, but always admired the man and his principles. Our current state of affairs and disarray in the White House stand in stark contrast. Yet in two years, one could say, hope springs eternal.
Kevin Kavanagh, Rockville Centre