Thursday, August 5, 2010

Poor Chris Hitchens

What a sad little man he’s become in his twilight. Brilliant even when utterly sodden (and perhaps by aid thereof), the only thing he’s sorrowful of is that he might not live long enough to read the Pope’s obituary.

His reconciliation with his estranged (former atheist, now Anglican) brother raised my hopes just a bit, though not unreasonably: Now that they were back on speaking terms, I thought perhaps his brother might at least get him to lighten up a bit. Besides the cancer, what’s eating Chris Hitchens, anyway, I wondered. What did any person of faith ever do to him?

Now he heaves this latest, desperate splosh of gravelly gin-and-tonic vomit on the sidewalk of the world:

Will I really not live long enough … to read — if not indeed write — the obituaries of elderly criminals like Henry Kissinger and Joseph Ratzinger?

Witness a man ravaged by cancer, shaking his fist at God and shrieking that he will not go gently. He will rage, rage against that light, no matter whom he offends, especially God. Hitchens won’t even entertain any doubt, won’t slide into so much as agnosticism. For him, the jury resumed early in his youth, and returned a verdict of guilty for everyone who believes.

Really, it smacks of sublimation, considering his background, which is awash in intrigue (for those so intrigued). But I’m sure Hitchens’ latest invective will bother faithful Catholics worldwide more than it’ll upset the Holy Father, who will likely pray for him.

Hitch will need it.


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