Imagining a different Bush.

In The Past is Over, a community art project by Helena Keeffe, 7-to-10-year olds at a San Francisco Elementary School were asked to "imagine a speech given by president Bush that would convince you that he has had a change of heart and could actually be the president of your dreams." The resulting speeches, read by a Bush impersonator, run the gamut, from "Bush" admitting that his Twinkie addiction has harmed the country to this imaginary president promising to provide homes for the homeless. (My favorite is by Lumi Sugazawa-O'Neill.) The winners of Keeffe's project won $50 that went toward a cake party for their class.


Anonymous said...

I find this project to be fairly gross in it's involvement of children and politics.

It is ALWAYS disturbing when kids are told what to believe about politics before they have a full capacity to understand the issues.

Children being told Bush is a great president would be just as disturbing, wouldn't it? Why apply a double standard?

Paul Schmelzer said...

Good points. But the artist held an essay contest, so the kids who participated did so by choice, not by coercion. Maybe their parents told them "what to believe," but that's a different issue. At any rate, I think it's a good thing for kids (and all Americans) to learn that they can envision a political future and be active in creating it.