It has been fascinating watching the nation put John McCain to rest.
I didn’t make any effort to see the funeral, but have since read many of the posts and testimonials, some from those who knew him and many from those who did not. Can’t believe I’m feeling a desire to weigh in.
I was furious with that man after the 2008 election. He stunned us by putting a woman on the ticket, giving us a brief moment of hope, then making many of us question his sanity when that decision blew up in his face and sent his campaign off the rails. It felt like a slap – worse than Romney’s “binders full of women” four years later, and emblematic of the same male hubris. IMHO.
But his personal conduct during that campaign – and especially at its conclusion – was noted. (Remember that exemplary concession speech?! “We never hide from history.”)
The fact that he could win back the nation’s respect is a testament to his essential goodness, and his regular demonstrations of integrity have come to mean so much more in light of events since then.
One has to respect Senator McCain’s apparent decency in both public and private life, his commitment to honestly-held convictions, and his refusal to ever be cast as a victim. One can respect such a man. One can trust such a man. Which is really all one wants from our leaders, whether or not we share their political views.
If more people like John McCain were to run for office, perhaps the nation would not be as cynical as we have become. (We deeply fear that decent people can no longer endure the mud pit that national politics has become.)
And now he is gone. But his example must endure. I guess that’s why I write this.
We pray earnestly that among this crop of new contenders for local, state and national office, those newly activated by current events, will be such men and women.
R.I.P. Senator John McCain