Today, Pastor Rick Warren, on behalf of his Global PEACE Coalition, presented President Bush with the Coalition's very first International Medal of PEACE.
International. Medal. Of. PEACE.
Now admittedly, it's hugely tempting to simply end the post here and stand back and watch as each reader's hypocrisy meter goes critical and explodes into a million little pieces.
But that would be doing the details a disservice.
Per the press release, the award, presented on World AIDS Day, was given to President Bush in recognition of his "unprecedented contribution to the fight against HIV/AIDS."
According to Warren, “No U.S. president or political leader has done more for global health than this Administration."
Specifically, he is being honored for the PEPFAR program, i.e, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. This is the program that stipulates that 2/3 of funds allocated to behavioral prevention programs must go to abstinence-only/faithful-after-marriage programs (despite the fact that virtually every study has shown that such programs are essentially ineffective). Even if your program promotes abstinence and faithfulness, but also the efficacy of condoms in preventing HIV/AIDS, well sorry, you don't get any of that 2/3. The remaining 1/3 can go to condom programs, but only if those programs don't promote condoms to young people. Because everyone knows how effective selling abstinence to teenagers is.
So, what Bush is really being honored for is his unprecedented contribution to the religious right's Holy War on Fucking™.
And as a bonus, again from the press release, the award is "for outstanding contribution toward alleviating the five global giants recognized by the Coalition, including pandemic diseases, extreme poverty, illiteracy, self-centered leadership and spiritual emptiness."
Doesn't Bush personally embody at least three of the five global giants all by himself?
How cool is that?
*With apologies to The Rude Pundit for "borrowing" his schtick.