Desmond Tutu, public intellectual, cleric, all round enemy-of-injustice, and professional granddad, departs the public stage today – his 79th birthday – for a life of well-earned dotage.
The Bishop has proven to be an astute observer and commentator of the post-apartheid period, repeatedly criticizing elites for failing to deliver social and economic returns to the poor. When others were too afraid, or too proud, to speak openly, our man openly, and often, berated Thabo Mbeki’s hair-brained HIV/AIDS positions, earning stinging, and often extremely personal rebukes. Not content to fiddle exclusively at home, the good Arch raised the ire of racists, bigots and homophobes everywhere.
We’ll miss the laugh, the spontaneous, often inopportune dance moves, and altogether doubt that this man will go quietly … Go well tata.