So, Molly Ivins has died of breast cancer.
I remember when I was just out of college during Bush the Senior's tenure, and Molly Ivins' column was featured regularly in the Hartford Courant (which is, by the way, still the best paper I've had the privilege of reading on a daily basis). I used to read hers, along with Ellen Goodman's, and I'd think, "ok, maybe the world isn't going to hell in a handbasket just yet. There are still thinking people out there."
I have often thought of her mockery of the Texas "Lege," particularly when I hear of some new foolishness our own "Lege" is up to. (Which means I think of her almost constantly.)
I remember particularly Ivins' commentary on how it was that Ann Richards (who also died within the past year, sadly) had won the Texas Gubernatorial election in 1990. Richards' opponent was a nasty guy. He liked to say that if a woman was being raped, she should lie back and enjoy it - that's the kind of guy he was. Well, Richards and her opponent were at some function - perhaps a debate, perhaps some other televised event - and she cordially reached out her hand to shake his. He refused.
I wish I could find the exact quote, but Ivins wrote something like "That decided it. Bubba could tell rape jokes, but Bubba wasn't rude to no lady." And Ann Richards won the election.
I will particularly miss Ivins' insightful, sharp wit. She had a gift for cutting through the bullshit. We relied on her voice to speak for all of us - and we needed her to do it. She did it so well.