I kept the magazine commemorating Ted Kennedy's death last year.
I see the cover with his face every day. I've re-read that issue many times -- not just the articles about the Kennedy family -- I've browsed, and read once more about the hit movies, tennis news, was Michael Jackson's death a homicide, Lockerbie Bomber released from prison, Palestine/Israel, Mexican drug cartels, N.J. protests, and should we send more troops in Afghanistan ...
It sounds like now. Was it just last year?
Yes. There's Kennedy's face and the dates: 1932 -2009.
Kennedy, "The Liberal Lion in the Senate," called the expansion of health care his life’s work.
What this extraordinarily wise man wanted and believed in continues to echo. What would he think say, do -- about the problems we now have -- a Congress that fights the President, and makes what the President is doing for the country, more of a struggle?
Hey, maybe it's okay -- it's great, it's progress -- that we have so many commentators -- that people with mobile phones, tweeting, face-booking, are commentators -- that the paid professional commentators on television and radio, with their electronic stuff are talking back and forth with each other and their "name" guests, who talk/tell/ declare authoritatively what the country needs.
But I don't think so. I think it's talky-talk that's making the political parties and who's going to be the president in 2012, and what party will be in power the issue, not the issues themselves.
In the commemorative Time Magazine, Richard Lacavo said about Ted: "When he buried his nephew, he echoed Yeats' words that a man should 'live to comb gray hair.' Too many Kennedy men didn't, but Teddy did. In his long life, he carried many burdens -- leader of his family, icon of his party, voice of the dispossessed. His death cuts a cord to a shimmery past but leaves a legacy far into the future."
Ted's legacy -- that strong face -- I can see as I'm typing -- yes, he lives on in the things he did, believed in, fought for.
Ted walked with the President -- during that last months of Ted's life, he and Barack walked and talked, probably more than once.
I wish we could hear Ted Kennedy's words now, telling us as individuals, telling the commentators and Congress to focus on what the people of American need now.
I hear you Ted Kennedy, and echo -- yes, we need to walk down the road with the President and let him lead the way and go along with him to where he thinks we should go.