I listened to Peggy Noonan talk about William F. Buckley, Jr. on an early morning news show yesterday (?)... days are running into each other, or so it seems. She has such a way with words, which is probably why I own at least three or four books she authored. Anyhoo, she said precisely what I was thinking at the time... that it is difficult to imagine a world in which there is no William F. Buckley, Jr.
I "discovered" WFB while a high school student, watching Firing Line on PBS. My family wasn't very political and certainly not intellectual (or conservative for that matter). However, there was something about the way WFB talked with his guests and the words they said that drew me in from the beginning. Firing Line was the genesis of my life as a conservative and a political groupie (the flames were really fanned by The Gipper).
My favorite Firing Line was repeated every Christmas season, while the show ran on PBS. It was the interview with Malcom Muggeridge about Christianity... good stuff! I've read some of his books and of course, The National Review. But it will always be those wonderful discussions that I will remember. They were so far over my head at the time but even then... seeds were planted that would grow through the years. Thanks, Bill.
Sigh, the other passing last week was a little more personal. For he was so much a symbol of the Jesus Movement, which I took part. It was quite difficult for me to believe that Larry Norman was 60.
How we loved his song, I Wish We'd All Been Ready. It was kind of the Kumbaya of the Jesus Movement. Perhaps his most famous song was well known at the time because of the title, Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music? Now that could spark a few theological discussions on the merits (or lack thereof) of various music genres. :)
I guess it shouldn't be strange to hear someone of that generation pass on. I mean, it has been a very long time since Keith Green died in the plane crash. However, that was a tragic event that seemed so "out of sync" with time and space. One didn't read that about Larry Norman's passing. He was getting to be an old man. But if that is true, then that means so many of us of the Jesus People generation are also aging. Hmmmm....