Was the Churchill bust removed because Obama hated him as a colonialist and racist?
Was the Martin Luther King bust removed by Trump because he is a racist?
Were either of the busts ever removed at all.
These earth shaking questions consumed three days of important coverage.
Perhaps the better question is “does anyone outside of the Washington Press Corps care?”
In his gigantic history of WWII Winston Churchill sets the tome with one sentence – “How the great democracies triumphed, and so were able to resume the follies that so nearly cost them their life”. One of the follies that democracies love to engage in is symbolism over substance and talk over action.
Throughout this great history are allusions to FDR’s political love affair with Joseph Stalin and his moving farther and farther away from Great Britain, our closest ally. Why that should have been was a great question then and remains one now because the cold war was a direct result of FDR’s liking of all things Soviet. The unhappiness with the democrats over Putin and his supposed interference in our elections goes against type and seem to have created or at least tried to create another cold war. JFK was a staunch anti communist and a fan of Churchill because of his fathers combative relationship with FDR. JFK was no fan of Martin Luther King and had him bugged by the FBI. Of course democrats will say “no, it was Hoover who bugged MLK because he was a racist” and they have hated the FBI and the CIA ever since. Now of course, for democrats. criticizing the FBI or CIA are horrible anti – patriotic acts since Trump criticized them. The democrat party showed their contempt for the intelligence agencies in the Church Committee hearings and have not backed down (remember the weapons of mass destruction?) until Trump got upset with them.
The politics for all of this are almost medieval but they exist. Had we an educated public that actually plowed through histories like Churchill’s, and read things like “Letters from a Birmingham Jail”, we might get a reasoned and balanced view of why a so called reporter would throw an observation about a bust out in the first minutes of a new presidents time in his office.
Acts can be symbolic. If a reporter wants to start a conversation over the removal of a bust he must find some symbolism there. It would be important, I would think for that reporter to explain what the symobolism is.
Sadly much of what passes for news is basically symbolic and therefore in the eye and mind of the reporter. The disappearing or not disappearing bust are a none story, but the fevered imagination of the reporter should be a bigger story than it is.
If the question arises as to why a blog that is to be about mercy wanders into areas like this, I would remind you that welfare work, refugee resettlement, concern for persecuted Christians, feeding the hungry etc are all part of the political framework we live in and how those things are perceived, as symbol or concrete action, are very important. Imaginary “red lines” that only exist as words have real world consequences. Ask Syrian Christian refugees.