President Bush has been granted a last wish, blindfolded and put in front of a firing squad.
In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Bush’s critics have taken aim at his untimely reaction and appointment of FEMA director Michael Brown through the age-old buddy system.
There’s no denying that the president’s actions (or inactions) were embarrassing to the people who put him in office.
However, while criticizing our leaders and government is a civil right that should be exercised, judgment must always be informed and contextualized.
Think about what your mother used to say: “Don’t point! When you point at someone you have four fingers pointing back at you!”
President Bush has brought the American people through some of the most turbulent times in our country’s history.
In his first term, Bush had to address the largest terrorist attack ever on American soil. Then, with the permission of the people, the president invaded Iraq and sparked a conflict that seems to have no resolution in sight. As if that wasn’t enough, Hurricane Katrina wiped out New Orleans, becoming one of the most devastating natural disasters the U.S. has ever seen.
After Hurricane Katrina passed, the country realized the devastation could not be handled on a local level. The blame game then went into full force.
Bush was held responsible for not reacting in a timely manner to help those stranded in New Orleans.
According to his detractors, it took three days for Bush to send help and address the issue with the gusto it deserved.
But what’s interesting, or perhaps disappointing, is that it seemed to take some of the Eastern community well over a week.
I am not discounting the donations made during chapel and other fundraising efforts, but I was let down by, what I felt, was a lack of discussion.
During a public relations class, my professor showed a CNN news clip with houses underwater and throngs of deserted people trying to survive at the Superdome and convention center.
It was obvious that some students had been completely oblivious that a hurricane, much less a category four monster, had ravaged the city.
As a student, I understand that it’s easy to get wrapped up in college life and that one can almost forget the outside world. But I also think we need to actively seek out important information.
Those who do not educate themselves and think critically about their role in society and in government have enabled Bush to act without consequence.
Obviously, the president has access to more information than we do, and, ultimately, he is responsible for his actions.
But if we expect President Bush to be knowledgeable, active and effective, then we should hold ourselves to the same standards.