Saturday, July 05, 2008

For Your Pleasure

From the desk of NRO online editor Kathryn Jean Lopez:

Fourth of July Deaths [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

This one, from 1596: Blessed Henry Abbot, who was martyred in York, England, for daring to explain the Catholic faith to a minister pretending to want him to (who turned him in for doing so). He was among four condemned, Abbot's execution saved for July 4, 1597. There are so many reminders of how precious freedom is and how devoted we must be to its protection, but those July 4th ones do have a way of making a special impression.

I understand the frustration with George W. Bush's insistence that we can bring all our freedoms to parts of the world who don't seem to want it — I share it. But I also get where he's coming from, and it's not a bad thing to encourage, at least on a civics level. What's more precious? What's a greater gift, other than life itself, which is innately tied to freedom? (If our parents don't protect our freedom to live, there is no life....)

K-Lo continues in a similar vein ten minutes later:


re: Civics [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

A totally crazy Saturday-morning thought: Wouldn't George W. Bush make an awesome high-school government teacher? Wouldn't it be something if his post-presidential life would up being that kind of post-service service? How's that for a model? Who needs Harvard visiting chairs and high-end lectures? How about Crawford High? (Or wherever?) Reach out and touch the young before they are jaded, or break them of the cynicism pop culture and possibly their parents have passed down to them. Whatever you think of President Bush, he's a likable guy in love with his country with some history and experience to share.

Like I said, crazy. Saturday. Have a good one.

Sure, laugh. But I betcha Bush knows when July 4 became the Fourth of July.

Update: Matt Yglesias imagines a Bush lesson bombardment plan:
The best part will be when he explains to kids that the president does not, in fact, have an obligation to follow the law and can just order arbitrary detention and torture willy-nilly because, hey, we're a nation at (undeclared, neverending) war. "That's right kids, if President Obama wants to have your testicles crushed no law and no treaty can stop him -- that's what the constitution says!" But of course if those kind of opinions are good enough for Berkeley Law School then why not high school civics?