Following the coverage of Senator Kennedy’s funeral over the weekend, I am struck by one overwhelming impression: that of the best and worst of human nature. The stories told at Friday’s remembrance celebration of the Senator’s graciousness, love of life and friendships with even his political opponents were outrageously funny and illustrated the life he lived.
Yet the comment sections of much of the coverage seems full of the haters — small minded, malicious, petty people who seem to only interested in venting their own little prejudices for all the world to see. It is almost as if these angry people are compelled to try to bring the rest of the world down to their level to justify their lives. This, of course, is the much discussed dark side of the information era – where IT amplifies the ability individuals to make vicious comments anonymously of course as they know what they say would reflect negatively on them.
Teddy Kennedy, Jr. said yesterday, “He was not perfect, but my father believed in redemption.” The haters apparently don’t. Too bad for them.
A few months ago, an elderly neighbor of mine passed away. It did not know him all that well, but was touched by his sparkle, humor and graciousness. At his memorial service I learned of the full and rich life he lived. He was not a “great” man in the sense that historians use that word. But he had “a life well lived,” to quote how his children summed it up.
There are those who live their lives in bitterness and anger–whose hate seems to be their guiding passion. Then there are those who strive for “the better side of our nature.” Those we rightfully label as having a big heart. My neighbor was one of those, as was Teddy Kennedy.
So let the haters flame on. As they stand in contrast to those with big hearts, they are just proving my point. And giving us one more reason to treasure the memory of people like Teddy Kennedy.
The Intangible Economy returns to its economic topics tomorrow.