Research Journal 3: Challenge

Exhibits in museums are set for a specific purpose, either to glorify or reminisce. In regards to war exhibits or memorials, only one side seems to show. This is apparent in memorials, such as the African American Civil War Memorial and Museum and the Vietnam War Memorial, both located in DC, which list the names of only soldiers who fought on said side. Why in DC? Because it is the center hub for all things American and patriotic in the United States. Our government is centered here and international bureaucracy and diplomacy is mainly handled and addressed here. With such a high octane of patriotism in one location, portraying an “official story” is not always appropriate to those who produce these memorials. One vital component of the Enola Gay memorial that caught my eye was “challenge,” mentioned in the Japanese Times article. The curator of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum said that creating a display that showed not only the Enola Gay, but its devastating effect on an entire culture would be a “good challenge” to the institution. He backed his claim by declaring the institution to be “primarily a technology museum;” primarily being the key word. Primarily is equivalent to mainly or mostly, not completely, so if it’s only primarily focused on technology, at least a small portion could be dedicated to the effects of said technology, especially one as memorable and significant of the Enola Gay.