Friday, July 4, 2008

Jesse helms dead at 86

I don't feel any glee over the announcement. Lives are precious, even when misspent. And even despicable lives contain sparks of divinity, and leave grieving loved ones who I would not want to disrespect.

It's helpful to me to separate Jesse Helms the person, who I can have some sympathy for, and for his family, and Jesse Helms the symbol of a brand of race-baiting, homophobic, willfully ignorant conservatism that Helms helped develop under Nixon, epitomized under Reagan and Bush I, and now has reached its nadir and flame-out under Bush II. It is the passing of that era he
represents I happily celebrate today, the death of that ideology, not the death of a man.

1 comment:

James said...

I wanted to note the passing of the senator at my blog, but couldn't find anything nice to say. Glad you could...