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There are many ways to describe former President George W. Bush: “The guy you’d rather have a beer with,” starter of a war that has cost nearly 1 million lives and over $2 trillion, a surprisingly not-bad painter, one of the least liked presidents in history. But you have probably never added “feminist” to that list.
His daughter Jenna Hager Bush would like you to reconsider. “People laugh at this, but I think my dad was a feminist,” she told People. “He showed us that we could be whatever we wanted to be. I want my girls to feel that way. I want them to feel strong and capable and feel like they can conquer the world.”
The Today show correspondent also told the magazine that her parents encouraged her and her twin sister, Barbara Pierce Bush, to be “curious, independent thinkers. They wanted to raise us to have our own views and to be able to articulate them.”
But perhaps the most telling quote is this: Jenna and her sister “always felt sorry for the boys in her class because our dad led us to believe that we were the smartest, most capable kids out there,” she said.
Feminism: a very marketable buzzword sometimes confused with inflating an already privileged child’s self-esteem.
Jessica Machado is the IRL editor of the Daily Dot. Previously, she was an associate editor at Rolling Stone. Her work has been published in the Washington Post, Elle, Vice, Salon, BuzzFeed, Guernica, Bitch, Bust, the Cut, the Awl, the Toast, among others.