After Bush Sr.’s loss of life, Twitter grapples with the ex-president’s divisive legacy

After Bush Sr.’s loss of life, Twitter grapples with the ex-president’s divisive legacy

How also can gentle the area undergo in mind George H.W. Bush?
How also can gentle the area undergo in mind George H.W. Bush?

Image: MIKE SARGENT/AFP/Getty Photography

2017p.c2f09p.c2f19p.c2ffap.c2frakheadshot.f59fbBy Rachel Kraus

The nation, and the internet, are remembering President George H.W. Bush following his loss of life simply after center of the night on Dec. 1. Some obituaries and remembrances are highlighting what writers picture as his “civility” — a sizzling button be aware that pundits and critics beget variably longed for in each the actions of political protesters, and our be aware-diarrhea prone President.

Bush, Sr. became reportedly affable and diplomatic; he absolutely did now not use dehumanizing language in 280 characters to disparage his enemies while in place of job. He became also accountable for presiding over the tip of the Chilly Battle, strengthening environmental protections, and signing the Americans with Disabilities Act into law.

SEE ALSO: The underrated presidency of George H.W. Bush

But many on Twitter identified his obvious superiority to President Trump shouldn’t elide a determined-eyed stare upon his lifestyles in public place of job. And that his legacy is powerful more refined, and even grisly, than one of the most obituaries counsel. 

The hagiography surrounding Bush and the attempts to silence any criticism has more to cease with simply the ongoing emphasis of many on civility the least bit prices.

— Carolina Workers Collective (@WorkersCarolina) December 2, 2018

When Jimmy Carter dies, he’ll gain half of a recordsdata cycle and there would possibly presumably well per chance now not be a single Democrat on Meet the Press.

— Flow Lee Shot First (@elongreen) December 2, 2018

Trump also can develop us long for a licensed and diplomatic president. But as many beget identified, that doesn’t mean we also can gentle gloss over the real heed these conservatives of yore left on our country, and on of us’s lives.

Received’t sugarcoat George H.W. Bush’s legacy: Willie Horton, Clarence Thomas, Battle on Drugs, Iraq, Iran Contra, nonetheless his carrier, handling of the Chilly Battle, climate insurance policies & NRA comments also can’t be omitted. Presidents who lumber wants to be rather critiqued now not in the present day mythologized.

— Adam Simplest (@adamcbest) December 1, 2018

Listed below are one of the most diversified parts of Bush’s legacy that Twitter says we can now not neglect.

1. The AIDS Crisis

Regarded as one of the most harshest indictments of Bush’s legacy took speak as a consequence of the darkly ironic timing of his loss of life. Bush, Sr. passed on World AIDS Day, the day memorializing the AIDS disaster and its victims, raising awareness, and showing toughen for these residing with HIV. 

Don’t know that I will be succesful of in actuality address George HW Bush apologia/hagiography on World AIDS Day.

— Isaac Butler (@parabasis) December 1, 2018

As President and, sooner than that, Vice President below President Ronald Reagan, Bush led the country while AIDS took the lives of over One hundred,000 Americans in the Eighties and early Nineties. At the time, these combating for motion on AIDS criticized the two administrations’ slowness to address the disaster, and Bush’s conflating of the illness with irresponsible “habits.” 

Organizations gentle combating to de-stigmatize the illness, activists, historians, and others, did now not let the timing of Bush’s loss of life stir overlooked. 

Let’s by no manner neglect that George H.W. Bush perpetuated HIV discrimination by project of federal laws and watched as over One hundred,000 Americans died of AIDS-connected deaths. #WorldAIDSDay

— ACT UP Restful York (@actupny) December 1, 2018

It’s World AIDS Day.

So let’s undergo in mind what George H.W. Bush did about that:

– banned HIV+ of us from entering the U.S.


– decreased overview funding

– appreciated abstinence education over real intercourse ed along side safer intercourse practices

– over a One hundred,000 died of AIDS on his look

— Racheline Maltese (@racheline_m) December 1, 2018

A skills of LGBT Americans, many of their 20s and 30s, became worn out by an AIDS epidemic omitted by Reagan/Bush and Bush/Quayle till it became a ways too behind. God how I prefer they also can beget lived till Ninety four too. We obtained’t neglect them and we obtained’t ignore the very fact. #WorldAidsDay

— billy eichner (@billyeichner) December 2, 2018

by no manner neglect that in 1992, ACT UP activists threw the ashes of their relatives onto the White Dwelling backyard to sing H.W. Bush’s inaction on the AIDS epidemic pic.twitter.com/fYm7Hj97sG

— Michael Waters (@ABoredAuthor) December 1, 2018

mourning the thousands who died of AIDS while Reagan/Bush laughed, lower AIDS overview, barred HIV+ of us from entering country. by no manner sugarcoat a president’s legacy after loss of life, nonetheless particularly now not on World AIDS Day

— Lena Solow (@lenaruthsolow) December 1, 2018

2. Pardons for Iran-Contra

All the intention thru President Reagan and Vice President Bush’s 2d term, recordsdata broke that the government became secretly promoting fingers to Iran, which became below an fingers embargo, and the utilization of the proceeds to toughen the anti-socialist Contras in Nicaragua. The scandal became identified as The Iran-Contra Affair, and it laid naked the U.S.’s clandestine efforts to intervene in South American politics, on the total with bloody penalties.

But Bush became simply the Veep — what did this prefer to cease with him? The federal government ended up indicting 14 officials and convicting 11 for his or her position in Iran-Contra. But in the closing days of his administration, Bush pardoned six of the indicted.

Sorry, nonetheless you can’t be enraged about Trump’s obstruction of justice, assaults on Mueller and dangling of pardons in entrance of Manafort and then also claim George H.W. Bush became a paragon of integrity who respected the law and special counsels, given he did this:https://t.co/gxDgopgiBd pic.twitter.com/siDS2bVRJZ

— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) December 1, 2018

3. The Battle on Drugs

As president, Bush persisted Reagan’s “war on medication” reach to combating drug use in The United States. This resulted in racist foremost minimal criminal tricks which led to the disproportionate incarceration of minorities with harsh sentencing for minor drug offenses. 

Historian Joshua Clark Davis shared a Twitter thread about the predominant historical past in the again of an anti-drug Bush press convention that has long gone viral. In point of fact, Davis says that DEA brokers living up a drug bust in entrance of the White Dwelling so as that Bush also can develop a level about the pervasiveness of the drug self-discipline in a televised address. Attributable to of foremost minimal criminal tricks, the excessive schooler who offered medication to brokers ended up serving a seven-year sentence.

President George Bush desired to expose The United States what crack cocaine looked treasure at his first Oval Place of work address on Sept 5, 1989. He desired to expose you also would possibly presumably well even use crack in entrance of the White Dwelling. That’s how harmful the disaster had gotten. That’s how Bush launched his Battle on Drugs. pic.twitter.com/exGGPxJ6f2

— Joshua Clark Davis (@JoshClarkDavis) December 1, 2018

Right here’s a major allotment of Bush’s legacy. It’s what his Battle on Drugs did to simply one individual. But it absolutely reveals the human prices of that war in little ingredient. A excessive schooler became lured to the WH to sell crack and spent 7+ years in penal advanced, so as that the President also can develop a level on TV.

— Joshua Clark Davis (@JoshClarkDavis) December 1, 2018

“Mr. Bush purchased extraordinarily frustrated when he became pressed on the sigh. At one level, he snapped at newshounds: ”I create now not realize. I mean, has any individual purchased some advocates here for this drug man?” https://t.co/cuJMjSBCM0 By project of @JoshClarkDavis (quiz also byline)

— Irin Carmon (@irin) December 2, 2018

4. Clarence Thomas and #MeToo

President Bush appointed Justice Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court docket, and stood by him in the wake of Anita HIll’s accusations of sexual harassment and the next congressional listening to.

Those memorializing Bush connected this allotment of his legacy to the recent Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford hearings. And, to the allegations of sexual harassment of Bush himself.

Merely a reminder that Clarence Thomas became George H Bush’s Brett Kavanaugh. Halt searching to develop entitled assholes into saints once they die. #AnitaHill

— Jazz Sayin (@jazz_sayin) December 2, 2018

Oct. 9, 1991: George H.W. Bush met along with his SCOTUS nominee Clarence Thomas to fetch out his potential to refute Anita Hill’s accusations of sexual harassment. Bush reaffirmed his “total self belief” in Thomas, who would be confirmed the following week, 52-forty eight. pic.twitter.com/Z7wFMyTZec

— POLITICO (@politico) December 1, 2018

We purchased Clarence Thomas from HW and “Bart O’Kavanaugh” from Trump too. So they appear to beget reasonably a bit in smartly-liked. I also can now not ever forgive Bush for Thomas or Trump for Kavanaugh. No longer to level out Dubblya lobbied for Kavanaugh in the again of the scenes too. They’re all frightful in point of fact.

— Rebecca Riley ☀️🌎🌲🦋🌈✡️ (@emprestheodora) December 2, 2018

I’ve be taught many pieces this day about HW and nearly none level out that he’s been accused of serial groping or that he nominated and stood by Clarence Thomas. https://t.co/xrfpV5uMqF

— Laura McGann (@lkmcgann) December 1, 2018

5. Racism

Alongside Bush’s amped up Battle on Drugs, some are remembering the forty first president for promoting racism to support him gain elected, and his failure to legislate civil rights. That’s what references to “the Willie Horton advert” are speaking about.

Bush inclined an advert that demonized a dark criminal as one intention to expose that his opponent became feeble on crime. He also vetoed the Civil Rights Act of 1990 which would possibly per chance beget reinforced anti-discrimination criminal tricks.

How George H.W. Bush lives on: The Willie Horton advert that helped gain him elected became made by Floyd Brown. After ’88, Brown formed an organization to gain Bush nominees onto the courts. A style of nominees became Clarence Thomas. The name of that group became Citizens United.

— corey robin (@CoreyRobin) December 1, 2018

George HW Bush escalated the war on medication, main police to get the militia-grade equipment now inclined. Bush helped dangle the recent police speak, which has led to the incarceration & loss of life of thousands of dark & brown of us, while doing runt to curb drug use.

— X (@XLNB) December 1, 2018

Willie Horton is now not only a footnote in George Bush’s otherwise storied occupation. The forty first president consistently supported racist political positions.

He antagonistic the 1964 Civil Rights Act, saying, “It became passed to guard 14% of the of us. I’m also worried about the diversified 86%.”

— Rebecca J. Kavanagh (@DrRJKavanagh) December 2, 2018

There shall be tons of revisionist historical past on H.W.

As a Dim man, I also can now not neglect that he nominated Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court docket and ran on racial fright-mongering advertisements treasure “Willie Horton” that supported the loss of life penalty. pic.twitter.com/ayrAppDoby

— Charles Preston (@_CharlesPreston) December 1, 2018

Bush’s one-term presidency clearly has reverberations this day. Whereas it be tempting to overview historical past thru the lens of Trump, it be important to undergo in mind the figures who came sooner than him without the excuse that funhouse mediate retrospection gives.