It may have been quite a coincidence, but George H. W. Bush dying the day before World Aids Day carries major significance, argues Steven W. Thrasher of The Nation. He failed to properly address AIDS while US president, combining inaction with the ridiculous belief that those carrying the disease were themselves to blame. His policies, such as ignoring harmful social conditions like poverty, homelessness and inadequate medical care, sowed the seeds for AIDS to thrive and decimate the LGBT community. ACT UP, which advocated for sufferers of the disease, endlessly targeted him for his direct hand in so many needless deaths.
The death of George H. W. Bush is a major loss for America, believes David Shribman of The Globe and Mail. He led the country phenomenally, overseeing the fall of the Soviet Union, making sure that his officials didn’t brag so as not to derail this process. Bush led the coalition that freed Kuwait from Iraq. But his real value shone through his personal actions. Soft-spoken and even emotional, he was sincere, thoughtful and full of compassion. Even political opponents couldn’t help but respect him. This was embodied by the great relationship with Bill Clinton, who personally ended his reelection hopes. Honorable and stoic, Bush was a true American hero.