Warning. This is an uncharacteristic post. I feel the need to write about something that has been haunting my thoughts since yesterday. It’s about a quick clip I saw on the news. I don’t even remember what they were talking about.
George W. Bush and Laura Bush are walking toward a helicopter. The camera’s view is from the back and to the side, so that the view is a three-quarter view from the back – you can sort of see their profiles. They walk side by side. There is a man in uniform standing at salute next to the helicopter door.
At the time, I commented to John that it sure was a weird, half-hearted, wavy little semi-salute gesture that Bush gave to the man as he started to enter the helicopter. That was all.
But ever since, the image of the two of them walking to the helicopter keeps coming to my mind.
His posture was odd, twisted to the side in a very subtle way. Although they walked side by side, I had the distinct impression that Laura was sheparding him.
When this image comes into my mind, I am overwhelmed with pity. I feel as though I want to cry, as though I want to hug them both and help to heal them somehow.
Yeah. I know. It’s bizarre. I am opposed to almost everything Bush has done. I don’t even like them. I don’t quite think they are of the same level of horribleness as say, Cheney and Gonzales and those oil executives who wouldn’t testify under oath, but they are in the same general kind of category – people for whom other people don’t matter very much.
Looking at these two people, I wonder if they fully realize what has happened to our country. He thinks he’s a strong leader, but he’s been played. He wanted to be a compassionate conservative, but his administration is just the opposite of both – it’s cruel and radically opposed to American values. Do they know? Do they understand? Could it really, truly be intentional? Or is he just in over his head?
Suddenly I felt the tragic dimension of it. He should never have become the President of the United States.
Yes, I blame him. It’s his responsibility. Still, I think of Judas hanging from the tree, and I always thought that the best Christian would be one who prayed for his soul.
I don’t know why this little clip affected me this way. Maybe because he wasn’t speaking. He just looked like an overgrown depressed kid. Is it possible that he could find something inside – that he could turn around? – or is it far too late for that?
Or maybe he knows something we don’t know?
Where does this pity come from? Why now? It makes no sense to me.