The Assassination of President George W. Bush
We’re about to cover the Bill of Rights. There’s so much to do with this section. Sure, we’ll make the chart. We’ll go further.
I have a documentary-style movie which, as it addresses police procedure under extraordinary circumstances and a modified version of the USA PATRIOT Act, will very nicely hit the Fourth through Sixth Amendments.
While the bruhaha over this movie blew over some time ago, I’m wondering about how best I should introduce it in my classroom.
“Death of a President” is a fictional documentary about the assassination of 43rd U.S. President George W. Bush. … The film covers topics of civil disobedience, racial profiling, the reduction of civil liberties, sensationalism and just-war theory.
It’s perfect for due process and freedom of assembly. It’s perfect for self-incrimination and the right to a speedy trial. Is it perfect for my classroom?
It isn’t like we’ve wholeheartedly avoided controversy. Remember which clip I’m using for the First Amendment. That’s already pretty hefty stuff.
Yes, I have approval from my master teacher. We’ll very carefully introduce The N-Word clip with a standard “This is meant to make you think” and the cursory “This does not represent the view of the establishment” and the relevancy-making “What do you understand about the First Amendment, now?”
Will this angle work on a movie about the assassination of the current president? This subject matter is potentially more sensitive. If the official movie blog is to be believed, Sen. Hillary Clinton (D — N. Y.) had this reaction:
I think it’s despicable.
I wonder if she even saw this movie. This movie isn’t about bashing Bush. In fact, most of the characters who are not suspects look up to the guy, nearly idolizing him.
The content is standards-based and, for once, the subject matter will immediately capture the attention of even my seniors. Why am I worrying, then?
Moral of the story? When in irreparable doubt, defer to your gut. What horrible advice.