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University of Denver Caves to Pressure, Nixes Humanitarian Award for Bush

The University of Denver recently announced that it is scrapping its plans to present George W. Bush with the “Improving the Human Condition Award” at the 16th annual Korbel Dinner in September.

The alteration came in the wake of protests by DU students and faculty who were appalled by the notion of presenting the former president with a humanitarian award. An online petition drafted by a 2012 graduate of the university’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies urged the school to “choose an alternative recipient” who “better represents a humanitarian spirit, a commitment to human rights and human dignity, and whose contributions and leadership have truly resulted in positive change.” The petition received nearly 1,500 signatures.


The anti-Bush fervor, in addition to being highly partisan, ignores the true humanitarianism of the former president’s efforts in Africa. Even during Preisdent Obama’s trip to Africa last week, many Africans were vocal about their love for Bush; his private ventures, including Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, and the programs he started while in office, such as the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, have made a real difference for millions of people. (For the record, President Obama’s most recent budget proposal cuts funding for PEPFAR from $4.24 billion to $4 billion, according to the New York Times.)

The University of Denver is still deciding what name they will attach to the award that George W. Bush will be given at the Korbel Dinner for his service to our country and his work in Africa. Until then, there is a noticeable blank space in the event program that dishonors the man being honored.


Good thing they did not nominate Obama, aye?
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