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Historians face many difficulties in their drive to put together the pieces of the past Two of these problems are hagiography and presentism These two issues are one of the factors that led to the controversy over the Enola Gay exhibit and its eventual cancellation Hagiography is the tendency to glorify an event as a sort of worship It seems that the Air Force Association some Veterans groups and some members of the United states Congress fall into this historical trap The Enola Gay exhibit was intended to be put on display for the 50th anniversary of the day the Atomic Bomb was dropped on Japan Some people thought of the exhibit as strictly a commemoration for the American troops who died and those that are still alive It seems that they had no interest in telling Japans side of the story In The Journal of American History December 1995 Richard H Kohn says that The United States government like other national governments in the last two centuries has used the memory of war to construct the identity and to build the cohesion of the modern nation-state This suggests that the memory of war has been intentionally used and maybe even glorified in order to bring the United States together Some Congress members felt that the Enola Gay exhibit did not fit the popular viewpoints and therefore should not be funded with tax dollars Senator Stevens questioned taxpayers support of a book or a museum exhibit on the basis of scholarly enterprise despite the fact that it goes against the commonly accepted viewpoint as to the interpretation of the history of the event This statement basically suggests that unless a view is commonly accepted it should not be publicly funded It could also suggest that if a viewpoint is not commonly accepted then that view point is not accurate This statement could be looked at as hagiography in the way that it
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