The Two Sides of President George W. Bush

President George W. Bush led a very controversial presidency. The September 11 attacks and his reaction after are clearly what define his legacy. Right after September 11, Americans approved of Bush more than any other time in his presidency.  This approval steadily declined throughout the rest of his time as President. This, undoubtedly, had to do with the “War on Terror”. Americans generally did not agree with this war or the way he was handling it. The media was critical of him and he was often portrayed as stupid and incompetent.

Autobiographies are very common nowadays. Political and social figures often compose them to show the public the side they didn’t see. I think one of the major reasons Bush wrote his autobiography was to clear his name. The mockery and critical nature of the media, no matter how true, turned him into a character and dehumanized him, in a way. Americans didn’t take him seriously. Reading his experience on September 11, filled with personal thoughts and feelings, makes people realize that he’s only human, just like the rest of us. His book portrayed him in a new light, which I think is probably what he wanted. It’s hard to take it as total fact, however, since his motive is to redeem himself, so it was probably skewed a bit. The part about the secret service not letting him go back to Washington when he wanted to, for example, is a point he made several times. He was the President of the United States, the leader of the free world; he could have done what he wanted.

I don’t believe either of these two sides are truly George W. Bush. Both have their biases, conditions, and motives. Seeing different angles and reading different stories about him can, however, begin to paint a picture of who he truly is and what his true intentions were.


Christina Zaranka


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