By Lucas Shaw
Dec. 16, 2011
Christopher Hitchens was as divisive as they come in print, but the news of his death has elicited a universal outpouring of grief and respect from the journalistic community — and from some unlikely sources.
As is now customary, many took to Twitter to offer their thoughts, from Hitchens’ friend Salman Rushdie to famed American cyclist Lance Armstrong.
Also read: Vanity Fair Columnist Christopher Hitchens Dead at 62
Some went with direct praise and tribute.
Rushdie tweeted, “Goodbye, my beloved friend. A great voice falls silent. A great heart stops. Christopher Hitchens, April 13, 1949-December 15, 2011.”
Jonathan Alter, Bloomberg columnist, tweeted “I met #Hitchens in ’83 and we argued amiably ever since, once til 3 am. In awe of his wit, erudition and lubricated work ethic. Very sad.”
Also read Hollyblog: Why Christopher Hitchens Mattered
The New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof added “RIP Christopher Hitchens, brilliant essayist with the chutzpah to attack Mother Teresa and God.”
Celebrity chef and TV host Anthony Bourdain: “Christopher Hitchens RIP. The world just got a helluva a lot dumber.”
Armstrong: “Chris Hitchens has passed. His courage & candor about cancer was incredible. #braveandbrilliantman.”
There were others who took to tweeting Hitchens’ work or some of his quotes, like Roger Ebert.
“A Hitchens essay in which he questions much of what he had been told about dying,” and “’Being a writer is what I am, rather than what I do.’ ~ Christopher Hitchens,” were two of Ebert’s tweets.
Meanwhile, some made light of Hitchens’ penchant for incessant verbal combat.
“I would tell Christopher Hitchens to rest in peace, but that would be impossible,” Jeff Jarvis tweeted.
The Onion: “Fumbling, Inarticulate Obituary Writer Somehow Losing Debate To Christopher Hitchens.”
Or his love of drinking.