. . . is a tricky thing for me. Having only had one brief interaction with him over a Facebook chat module, and having not always been entirely charitable in my analysis of his work, there’s an extremely delicate balance to strike in honoring his memory. It would be dishonest to pretend that I’ve always been an unwavering admirer of everything he ever said or did, even though I think he was an immensely beneficial force within the conservative movement when you total up his contributions.
I didn’t know him personally, nor did I follow his every move or echo his every pronouncement. There were times, in fact, when I was critical of him and the way in which he wielded his undeniable influence. But, I knew enough about him to know that he was a uniquely valuable asset to the online conservative community and the movement as a whole.
There was no greater contributor to the tea party uprising than Andrew Breitbart, and while it may not be without its flaws, it would be hard to overstate how much its existence and success benefited the cause of conservatism. It would also be impossible to overstate how much he did to change the face of politics in America and, by extension, the world given his contributions to the way news and information are disseminated to an information-hungry online population.
But, at the very bottom of all that, Andrew Breitbart was a human being, and he was no doubt treasured as much on a personal level by those who knew him as he was on a public level by those who fell within his sphere of influence. And, while I didn’t know him well enough personally to feel the searing sense of loss that so many people undoubtedly do now that he has passed from the scene, I do know that sense of loss myself having experienced it all too recently.
So, rather than try to construct a phony account of how deeply my life will be affected by his absence, I think it’s best to leave that to the people who actually did know and love the man on a personal level. That seems to be the only fitting tribute to a man like Andrew Breitbart, who stood for truth above all else and seemed incapable of putting forth a false pretense in order to endear himself to people whose good graces can be won by doing so.
If you want to hear that fitting tribute, click on over to Ricochet and listen to this podcast put together in remembrance of his nigh-incalculable legacy.