Conservative columnist Robert Novak died Tuesday from a brain tumor, about one year after doctors discovered his condition and estimated he had only six months to a year to live. I wrote a bit about Novak’s surprise diagnosis last September, and linked to his own column about it—one of the last columns he published. One of the parts that I found refreshing and touching was how, despite their quite serious political differences, Novak found help and support from the Kennedy family (Senator Ted Kennedy [D-MA] had recently found he suffered from brain cancer as well).
Paul Begala, a liberal commentator who had worked with Novak on CNN, wrote a similarly refreshing and touching commentary yesterday. Begala and Novak were friends, despite their almost polar-opposite political worldviews.
Frankly, I’m no fan of either man as commentators. Both are/were extremists on their respective sides of the political spectrum, and tended to go (in my opinion) too far in arguing their points. Regardless, it is always nice to see the kindness that people can show one another in their times of need. You would not think that Kennedy or Begala would have anything nice to say about or to Novak, but they did. Most likely, had the roles been reversed, Novak would have handled things in the same kind, respectful, loving way.