This from guest blogger Andy Hemming, SMU student and executive director of SMU Young Conservatives of Texas:
We collected petitions for a little more than six hours, at first in the rain, and then inside the student center. During this time we collected about 500 signatures in support of the Bush Library as proposed (library, museum, institute/ think tank) Most of those signing were students, although a few faculty and alumni stopped by to add their name to the list as well. Faculty opposition to the institute prompted many to sign, either because they were strongly in favor of the institute on its own merits or because they feared that if SMU didn’t accept the institute we might lose the library as well. One common refrain that we heard was that even if students might not like Bush, they understand the value to SMU of having his complex here.
By and large there was not much debate on the topic, as it seemed like those opposed to the Bush complex politely walked by. However, some felt that it was necessary to make snide remarks about our petition instead of actually stopping to discuss our differing philosophies. I felt that when people actually did stop and debate, it was very cordial and a good discussion of the issues was had. There is a fair chance that we could top 600 signatures by the end of the week as we have a few stray petitions given out for students to take around their respective Greek houses or dorms. On behalf of the SMU Chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas, I would like to thank all of those that stopped by the table to either sign or debate the issues. If anyone has any questions or comments about this petition, please do not hesitate to contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
SMU Young Conservatives of Texas Executive Director