Cal Thomas' column from 5/22/08 brought tears to my eyes. In this day of partisan politics its always a game of "us" vs. "them." Who, outside the Washington beltway, would've known that Cal Thomas and Senator Kennedy have been friends for the last 25 years? Now, with the news of Senator Kennedy's malignant brain tumor reverberating across the political landscape, Cal Thomas shows us how we should live.
Here are a couple of quotes to whet your appetite:
It began in 1983 when I received a call from a Washington Post reporter. I was working for the Moral Majority at the time and a computer had spit out a membership card for Sen. Kennedy and then inadvertently sent it to him. The reporter asked if I wanted the card back. "No," I said. "We don't believe anyone is beyond redemption. In fact, I hope Sen. Kennedy comes and speaks at Liberty Baptist College (now Liberty University)," the school founded by the late Jerry Falwell.
A few days later, I received a call from Kennedy's chief of staff. "The senator accepts your invitation." I was stunned and so was Falwell, but Kennedy came and was well received. He spoke on faith, truth and tolerance and his remarks are as relevant today as they were when he uttered them...
Getting to know Sen. Kennedy that night and being with him on many subsequent occasions, helped me understand him on a level far different from TV images and direct-mail appeals that ask for $25 dollars to keep him from doing things that will "ruin" America (the Left sent out similar appeals for money to save America from my side).
I came to see Sen. Kennedy not as a symbol, but as a fellow human being who does not get up in the morning seeking ways to harm the country. I know of things he has done for the poor and homeless on his own time and in his own way without a press release or a desire for public approval. I know of other hurts and concerns about which I would never speak.
In our poisoned political atmosphere, there are few friendships like this, at least few anyone can speak of publicly for fear of political ruin. It ought to be a privilege (it is certainly a command) for my conservative Christian friends to pray for Sen. Kennedy that he might be healed and restored to health. It is certainly mine and I don't care who on "my side" knows it.
You can read the entire column here.