Percy Among the Conservatives

A lot of things bother me. The world is seemingly teeming with stuff that make me feel angry or frustrated or disappointed or depressed or what have you. Some of these things are very serious, others are much less weighty. But there is one thing — admittedly on the smaller side — that continues to make me mad. It’s the way in which Rod Dreher, The American Conservative and, more broadly, the trad/conservative-ish corners of the Catholic and Christian internet have cornered the market on discussing Walker Percy.

There are some ways in which Percy’s… shall we say, appropriation by these conservative outlets makes at least some sense. To be certain, Percy’s views on abortion are more in line with the (at least stated) views of the right wing of the political spectrum. Were he alive today, I do imagine Percy would be critical of the way in which Democrats and the Democratic Party deal with the issue of abortion. I also think anyone who is Catholic and affiliated with the Church will be at least somewhat conservative (though in the sense of conserving tradition and an appreciation for order… which is something totally different and probably should be referred to as traditional as opposed to conservative).

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