Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Remembering the Last Lion

Writers much more capable and qualified than myself are handling the tributes and obituaries for late U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy. Assuming you haven't already been inundated with links about Kennedy today, try out some of these:

Michael Tomasky: "There are and will be more Kennedys, but the Kennedy era is over now. Teddy was imperfect enough that some Americans will say amen to that. Let them. The rest of us know what a dramatically better place this country is because of him."

Josh Marshall at TPM asks if Kennedy's death might be a turning point in the health care debate that was near and dear to his heart?

Adam Serwer calls him "the only Kennedy who wasn't overrated." More: "He couldn't make the whole country fall in love with him. But centuries from now, when the sentimental attachment of those who can remember the older Kennedy brothers are gone, it is the youngest Kennedy sibling who will be remembered, warts and all, for having most shaped America's path, and most exemplified its ideals."

Truly a man ahead of his time, Kennedy was the first member of Congress to have a Web page.

Kennedy v. Ashcroft, 2005. Spencer Ackerman: "That was one representative moment from the career of Senator Edward Kennedy, extraordinary both for the way the man rose to the challenge of his times and how routine it was that he would."

Kennedy's plane crash in 1964, which killed one of his good friends. In a bit of an ironic twist, Kennedy had been delayed because he didn't want to miss a vote earlier in the day on the Civil Rights Act. Nobody ever said helping teh Negroes would be easy.

The Monkey Cage plucks out a few meaningful tidbits from Adam Clymer's biography.

"The Senate's Fighting Liberal" from The Nation in 2002.

Charles Pierce's beautiful piece - "if his name was Edward Moore" - from the Boston Globe in 2003.

Neocon crank Andrew Breitbart keeps it classy, calling Kennedy a "special pile of human excrement." What a compassionate conservative.

The Green Bay Packers actually recruited Kennedy out of college in 1955. He had been a star tight end at Harvard.

Over at PostBourgie, we offered our condolences. (Actually, I learned of Kennedy's death from G.D.'s Twitter feed).

Speaking of Twitter, Atrios almost literally caught fire today. The Interwebs are a better place with him around.

As for Kennedy, it's not even a question that our country is a better place because he persevered through his tragedies and missteps and went on to devote his life to public service. We all owe him a debt that can never truly be repaid.

1 comment:

maria said...

you did yeoman's work in collecting these great comments (and in adding your own). very nice. thanks.