According to reports in the mainstream media, “the Bush family on Saturday christened a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier named after the 82-year-old former president.”

Bad idea. History already shows that the senior Bush is a target for terrorists. Did we run out of obscure, much-deserving heroes from World War II and the Korea Conflict that we have to resort to naming carriers after a former president who is, by the way, still living?

There used to be a tradition that you didn’t name buildings, streets, ships, and so forth after living people. Furthermore, went the tradition, you don’t erect statues to living people. The idea was that living people, no matter how worthy, might still disgrace themselves before death and, furthermore, you were supposed to wait a decent interval after death for historians to have their say. The U.S. Postal Service still follows this tradition, waiting a decent interval after death before issuing stamps bearing the person’s name and likeness.

In every state of the union, there are Congressional Medal of Honor winners who committed legendary acts of heroism, yet don’t have anything named after them except, perhaps, a gravestone. These are the people whose names should be on aircraft carriers.


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