Sunday, September 5, 2010

Laura Bush

Laura Welch became Mrs. Bush in 1977
Before bringing her Stepford-esque grace to the White House as first lady to President George W. Bush, Laura Bush (then Laura Welch) was a student at Robert E. Lee High School in Midland, Texas. She graduated from Lee in 1964 and went on to study education at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. 


On the night of November 6, 1963, the seventeen-year-old Laura Welch's life changed forever when she ran a stop sign in her father's Chevy Impala and killed her good friend*, Michael Dutton Douglas, who was driving another vehicle. Welch and a girlfriend were chatting in their car as they rushed to a drive-in movie when the accident occurred.

In her 2010 autobiography, Spoken From the Heart, Mrs. Bush finally discussed the troubling incident in detail:
In those awful seconds, the car door must have been flung open by the impact and my body rose in the air until gravity took over and I was pulled, hard and fast, back to the earth...The whole time I was praying that the person in the other car was alive. In my mind, I was calling 'Please, God. Please God,' over and over again. 
Accident report released in 2000 - click to enlarge

In her book, Mrs. Bush reveals that she was consumed with guilt for many years, particularly after missing her friend's funeral--her parents did not want her to attend and she wound up sleeping late the day of ceremony.

Relative of Local People Dies In Wreck
Mike Douglas, 17, formerly of San Benito, died last night of injuries suffered a short time earlier when his car and another collided on the north edge of Midland.
Funeral arrangements are incomplete.
The son of Mr. and Mrs. W.T. Douglas of Midland, he had several aunts and an uncle living in Corpus Christi.
His father was behind him in another car. Mike was on his way to the home of a sister, Mrs. Joe Sims of Midland, to babysit for her. Injured in the other vehicle were Laura Welch and Judy Dykes, both of Midland, who were treated at a hospital and released. 
-- Excerpted from the Corpus Christi (Texas) Times, page 36, November 7, 1963  
The former first lady also writes of some external factors to the accident in an apparent effort to mitigate her culpability. She states that the intersection was quite dark, the stop sign was "small" and that the other automobile in the accident was the notoriously "unsafe at any speed" Corvair. She then invokes Ralph Nader's crusade against the car without noting the irony that it was Nader's third party candidacy in the 2000 election that helped elect her husband president.


Mrs. Bush also uses her book to try and exonerate W. for his bungling of Hurricane Katrina which caused over 1,500 deaths. And they said the Clintons were deadly...


* Laura Bush states in Spoken From the Heart that she was never romantically attached to her victim. Some accounts had previously reported that she and Michael Dutton Douglas were dating at the time of the accident.

2 comments:

  1. "She then invokes Ralph Nader's crusade against the car without noting the irony that it was Nader's third party candidacy in the 2000 election that helped elect her husband president."

    Not true at all...there were other third party candidates who garnered votes during that election, as well as probably Dem voters who decided to vote for Bush over Gore.

    The more deciding factor was the skullduggery in Florida--the elimination from the voter rolls of tens of thousands of people merely because they had names the same as or similar to a list of felons; the misdirection of black voters away from their proper voting sites to other poll places; the confusing design (by design?) of the butterfly ballot in southern Florida that caused Gore voters to accidentally vote for Patrick Buchanan (one of those other third party candidates); and most egregiously, the interference of the Supreme Court in the election to stop the recount.

    As later recounts showed, depending on how the counts were conducted, in a majority of scenarios, Gore won Florida with the votes that were cast.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You will note that the words "helped elect," were used indicating that Mr. Nader was not the sole reason for Mr. Gore's loss in 2000.

    ReplyDelete