Saturday, July 4, 2015

LBJ wanted to library to include controversy

I tell Harry Middleton [the director of  the LBJ Presidential  Library] that I heard a rumor that in the initial exhibition at the LBJ library, there was little or no representation  of Vietnam and that the  president himself came to the  library and insisted that that part of the exhibition should be beefed up.

Middleton nods. "To a certain extent that's true. There was a representation of Vietnam. But nothing that showed the controversy of Vietnam. And when President Johnson walked through the library just before it was to open, one  of the things  that he  commented on was that the library did not indicate how contentious that time was. He said to me, 'That was a very  controversial period. We've got to make sure that people know that we understand that.' He said to me, 'I don't want another damn credibility gap.'"
Sarah Vowell, The Partly Cloudy Patriot (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2002), p. 24

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