More Has Died than Just President Bush

President George H.W. Bush, the nation’s 41st President, has died at the relatively old age of 94. He was a very classy human being, and I’m sad he’s gone. But, more has died than just President Bush. With his passing, yet another vibrant symbol of a time we really have lost as a country can be seen. A time when Presidents were dignified, gracious, and magnanimous, caring about not just doing right, but the appearance of doing right. A time when Presidents were brave souls, tested in the crucible of actual combat, so that when they sent the nation’s armed forces into harm’s way they had a personal and sobering recollection of what that meant. A time when Presidents took an oath to serve and understood what an oath meant because they were people of integrity, who understood the value of truth and honesty and being bound by your word sincerely given, not just making it up on the fly every time their mouths opened. A time when Presidents cared about and stood up for timeless shared national values, not just expedient political victory at any cost. A time when Presidents understood the value of charity, the need for compromise, the benefits of collaboration, the joy derived when all Americans move forward together, not just the rich at the expense of the poor, the satisfying sense of human bonding derived from all races and sexes taking real time and effort to respect each other and nurture each other and understand that everyone can contribute – not just the self-elevated, self-selected few. A time when it would be unthinkable for a President to be lewd, and crass and mean and belittling and vengeful and vindictive and petty and a liar. President Bush is gone and I will miss him. But, far, far more, I miss all he represented… and what is now really gone from America.