Daybook, 7th July 2015

A heavy day, marked by the second well-publicized shooting of a black man by a police officer in as many days. On Twitter, I’m amazed at the disparate cross-section of people who are all frustrated by by this, demanding and seeking solutions and answers. There’s the social-justice Left, to be sure, which you would expect. But there is also a significant cross-section of various conservatives, law-and-order types, and libertarians working toward and seeking out the same things. As the first two of today’s readings make clear, what we’re seeing at work–and what should truly shock conservatives if death doesn’t shock them (us!)–is the failure of community, and a misplaced faith-in-government, rather than an understanding of government as beholden to Law and constituted as an entity responsive to the needs of its citizens (see the quote from Sir Roger Scruton in yesterday’s daybook for more on the “conservative” notion of government).

Other readings for today:

Something Else:

The more I read of and about him, the more fascinated I am by John Randolph of Roanoke, and the more I find much of thinking about the world articulated fairly well in his thought. A resource of his thought that I’m only beginning to work my way through is a collection of letters he wrote to a “young relative,” Theodore Dudley (a nephew, if I’m not mistaken).

The genre of letters written by an older man to a younger man is a great one, and one I’m saddened we seem to have lost. Other great examples include Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet and Lord Chesterfield’s letters to his son. I know I’m missing a lot more.

Something Beautiful:

One of my favo(u)rite parts of Twitter is English country churchyard Twitter. This came across my timeline recently, and it’s just lovely:

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