Tuesday, May 15, 2007

On the Passing of Jerry Falwell

The New York Times online wasted no time in posting an article on the death today of Jerry Falwell, and they opened a blog for reader comments on Falwell's legacy. Most of the comments - as of this moment, more than 70 of them - are on the order of "good riddance to bad rubbish," "may he rot in hell," and "let's throw a party and dance on his grave."

For the record, here is my comment, with one slight emendation:
I will not mourn the passing of Jerry Falwell, but I would note that most of the comments here are as mean-spirited and bigoted as many of his public comments. If we stop to think about it, Falwell represented the danger of any narrow and dogmatic ideology, left or right, secular or religious. Let someone who is without prejudice cast the first stone . . . and the stones will stay safely on the ground.
In short, Jerry Falwell was to all appearances a nasty, bigoted, and twisted individual, but we all have in us the potential to be his equal in that regard.