Let’s Be Fair To… Laura Bush

Former first lady Laura bush has come under significant criticism lately after Sewell Belmont House and Museum awarded her the Alice Award–an award honoring women who have helped women. Past recipients have been Hillary Clinton, Katie Couric, Nancy Pelosi and Olympia Snowe.
Her criticizers swear their disapproval  is not political.  “I couldn’t believe my eyes,” said Sonia Pressman Puentes, co-founder of the National Organization for Women. “It’s not partisan. I’m not complaining that she’s a Republican. I’m complaining that she’s never done anything for women to get this award.”
Puentes even says Michelle Obama isn’t worthy of the award. “Here you have a woman who was a brilliant attorney,” Fuentes said. “She’s just published a book about how to garden.”

Laura Bush flexing her muscles

(Wait, and what’s wrong with gardening? Are brilliant attorneys not allowed to like gardening?)

To be completely honest, when I think of Laura Bush I think of libraries, wife to a man who though an avid reader often spoke as though somewhat illiterate. So I did some research on what Laura Bush did as First Lady for 8 years:

  • Launched a breast cancer research and treatment initiative in Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates, where affected women were often abandoned by their husbands.
  • Championed the plight of Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi, at a time when the Burmese government atrocities remained under the media radar
  • Was instrumental in helping women advance in Afghanistan through education and professional training programs she shepherded through the Bush Institute
  • No Child Left Behind Act – and a staunch supporter of NCLB’s Reading First program, which is the largest early reading initiative in American history
  • Made five trips to Africa alone in support of life-saving global health initiatives, including the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) and the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
  • Was wife to Dubwya

Holy Mother of Cow. I find it almost more impressive that Mrs. Bush was “only” a librarian, because it goes to show that you don’t have to be a steel toed Hilary Clinton to get things done in the world.

So why the resistance against Laura Bush? Do liberals think that conservative, rich, white Republican ladies don’t deserve honor? Are we looking at her political affiliation rather than at the deeds she did that merited the award? Worse maybe– are we judging her because of her husband?

Talk about war on women.

This isn’t about who you voted for in the past presidential election. This is about honoring women who honor women, and any woman who has championed for literacy and spread health awareness merits an award.

 

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1 Comment

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One response to “Let’s Be Fair To… Laura Bush

  1. The Bushes are in Africa, again… to promote health preventative, welfare, and care for women. I wish NOW would open their eyes instead of their mouths.
    http://www.times.co.zm/?p=3193

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