On April 25, the gleaming, new George W. Bush Presidential Center on the campus of Southern Methodist University will be officially dedicated.
The center will honor and preserve the legacy of the 43rd U.S. president in the same basic way that such an edifice has similarly honored every president since Herbert Hoover.
Naturally, protesters calling themselves The People’s Response will seek to rain on Bush’s parade because they are still hopping mad about the Iraq War.
“As the elite gather to celebrate the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center and cast a veneer of legitimacy on the Bush administration and its policies, join us in Dallas and let your voice be heard!” urges the group’s website.
“It’s quite disturbing,” protestor-on-the-street Hadi Jawad told KHOU. “It’s quite disheartening to see this monument, this edifice here in Dallas, Texas.”
Jawad also told the Houston CBS affiliate that he has “skin in the game” because he is “of Iraqi descent.”
He said he is still mad incensed about the war, calling it “the unnecessary and unjustifiable, the immoral and illegal war that Bush and Cheney took us into.”
An official for the Bush Center told KHOU that the center “supports folks’ rights to protest peacefully and express their views.”
Local officials have told protest organizers that demonstrations won’t be allowed near the Bush Center. However, protesters will be able to object to the dedication of the Bush Center to their hearts’ content from a spot across a busy interstate.
So far, according to The People’s Response’s Facebook page, 368 people have indicated that they plan to show up. Pledged attendees include a number of students as well as a smattering of professional activists and, of course, journalist and former Lyndon Johnson aide Bill Moyers.
The group’s festivities are scheduled to last the week of April 22 to 26 and will include speakers, workshops, teach-ins, art and music.
Monday starts — after brunch — with something called Creative Action. The left-wing activist group CODEPINK will be involved.
Tuesday’s highlight will be a press conference, at which members of The People’s Response will preen and likely spout anti-war rhetoric against a president who hasn’t been in office for four years.
“Come out and be part of the photo-op!” the group’s website says. “Signs provided. Please wear black.”
Wednesday includes several anti-war speakers including Debra Sweet, the Director of World Can’t Wait, which was founded in 2005 to “drive out the Bush regime” — and heroically succeeded just three years later.
Thursday — the big dedication day — will bring a rally against the Bush Center.
“We will be dressed in black as the March of the Dead, along with veterans, will lead a slow, respectful procession toward the Bush Center in remembrance of those tortured or killed,” declares the The People’s Response. “Signs and banners will be provided. If you bring your own, please keep them on-message and coordinated with the dramatic black and white visual.”
A highly anticipated “dance party for peace” is scheduled for Thursday night.
Friday will mark the end of the week of anti-Bush protests. There will be a motivational breakfast and debriefing at the Holiday Inn Market Center.
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