Millennials had missed it all.
We Baby Boomers had the torch of a new generation passed to us by Roman Catholic very young U.S. President, John F. Kennedy. Then the world turned dark for a while. But soon enough came along another outlier, Jimmy Carter.
A peanut farmer from the South, seemingly not overly aggressive, and humble (he carried his own baggage), he was a breath of fresh air. Since many of us hadn't yet discovered the option of registering Independent, we were proud Democrats who voted in Carter.
The tragedy became that he wasn't voted in for a second term. Actually, he didn't have a chance against the showmanship of Ronald Reagan. Also, Corporate America had unusual power then. I was a speechwriter at Chevron. You can imagine what the party line was.
But, Carter came back. He rebranded as a philanthropist. Landed a Noble Prize. But we never really know the interior life of a man. Did he recover from the shame? Or did he replay the campaign over and over again in his head at 2 A.M.?
Today, with that same dignity he maintained after being the one-term U.S. President, he announced he had liver cancer which has spread to other parts of his body. Clearly he will not go gently into the night.
I kept a bedside vigil as my sister struggled with the same disease. Let's put it this way: I was grateful for the industrial-strength pain medications BigPharma had given humanity.
My thoughts, mostly those of the young adult I was when Carter came into our lives, are with Carter now. It would be a benefit to us all if he kept a chronicle of his days on social media.