I hear a lot these days about the dumbing down of public discourse, and a general decline in civic involvement. I generally chalk these up to oldsters giving vent to their frustrations over their own lost youth. But the recent death of William F. Buckley, Jr. reminds me that perhaps there is something to those complaints. Buckley's long lived interview program Firing Line was the very model of restrained, intelligent debate. And sadly, I suspect that its like will never be seen again. Watching a FL episode and then viewing the evening's offering of Bill O'Reilley is enough to cause any thinking person to cry tears of blood. Firing Line makes Hannity & Colmes look like The Jerry Springer Show. Or worse.
So take a moment to view this classic debate from 1969 between WFB and Noam Chomsky. Spirited, but never uncivil. May your God love you and keep you, Bill.