The Corner

U.S.

Pillars

Mike Brown in front of the office (Jay Nordlinger)

Over the years, I have quoted Mike Brown, here on the Corner and in columns. He is one of my favorite journalists and writers in America: the editor of the Rockdale Reporter, in Rockdale, Texas. On the homepage today, I have a piece on him — and the craft of newspapering. I also have a bonus: a podcast, a Q&A, here. Kevin Williamson and I went to visit Mike, in Rockdale. Kevin is a former newspaperman himself (and a Texan, like Mike). I’m more a magaziner (not like Ira, no offense to him or anybody else).

Let me tell you something that Neal Freeman, that veteran NR-nik, told me. He once drove across the country, selling WFB’s column in town after town, talking to newspaper editor after newspaper editor. He said that these people were not only editors, reporters, and historians — but priests, cops, mayors, welfare workers, etc.

So true. Pillars of the community (and think of the function of pillars in architecture).

Neal added, “I’m not sure what’s going to hold America together in the post–Mike Brown era.”

Something will, no doubt, but in the meantime it’s gratifying to have Mike Brown and platoons of others, doing the work that is essential to civic life, democratic life, American life. Again, the article is here and the podcast here.

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