Ask Kuo Anything

Andrew Sullivan —  Dec 12 2012 @ 8:57am

Ask Kuo Anything

[Re-posted from yesterday with several questions added by readers]

I've known David Kuo since he worked in the Bush White House as Deputy Director of the Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. When he was working there, he suffered a brain seizure while driving and, without his extraordinary wife, Kim, taking the wheels from him, they might both never have survived. But they have. David was diagnosed with brain cancer and left the Bush administration, reflecting in his conscience on his work there. The result was a book, Tempting Faith, that came out at almost the same time as The Conservative Soul. We found ourselves estranged from modern Republicanism and united by faith in Jesus. Thus a friendship was born, and it's one I have treasured deeply. We have talked together, joked together, laughed together and prayed together. And the cancer has come and gone and come back again. When I saw him last, he had difficulty walking very far. And then I got an email from him eleven days ago with the following news:

In the last four weeks two new tumors have grown. Both are in the same area as previous tumors. One is located directly on the motor pathway that controls my left leg. The other is at the front of the cavity created by previous surgeries. The news knocked the wind out of us, gave us vertigo. Frankly we are still spinning. In all the scenarios we could come up with this wasn't one of them. My physical state, even taking into account the blood clots and bleeding brain, was on the upswing. Those sensory seizures had stopped. We were crushed. All the suffering from the surgery and it did nothing but weaken me? All the hope for the viral treatment and nothing?

It occurred to me that David would be a great candidate for our Ask Anything series, and is so honest and open that he could be a wonderful interlocutor on issues of politics and religion, conservatism and its discontents, the power of faith in confronting mortality, and any number of other questions. He has helped me so much over the years in my own spiritual journey; and it would be true to say simply that I love him and am proud to have him here. So ask your questions here. He'll answer them as only he can, at this moment in his life.