two of my flawed heroes died in the past few days. I have not thought about either one in the past few years. However, both were instrumental to my development politically and spiritually.
It probably won't surprise you to find that I want to honor the memory of Larry Norman, the father of Christian Rock and one of the best songwriters ever who died on the 24th. He was Rich Mullins, Keith Green and Derek Webb a long time before they were challenging people with their edgy and intelligent lyrics. However, he was doing it with no palette besides Bob Dylan and John Lennon. Only Visiting This Planet is simply one of the greatest albums ever made.
Today I learned of the death of the great William F. Buckley, Jr. It may surprise you to find that I, with my slightly unConservative leanings am a fan of and influenced by Buckley. He was a brilliant writer, prescient and funny (and my favorite conservative writer ever). His arrogance and intellectual superiority never bothered me (I think I wanted to be him, yet different). He challenged me and helped me navigate my childhood fascinations with conservatism. As I left some of my early leanings, I still held on to many of the principles I learned from him- ones I will not go into now. I found some of his writings repugnant, yet always found him compelling. While so many of those influenced by him have become knee-jerk reductionist thinkers championing "conservative" principles culled from his writings, they have never read him (or Burke) or understood how he could disagree profoundly with another person politically and find that person a friend personally. He was a great example of us all in that area. Mr. Buckley- I thank you.