Dallas

November 22nd, 2009

In memory of the John F. Kennedy, assassinated 46 years ago today at 12:30 pm in Dallas, Texas. He was 46 years old. Prior to his assassination, he was the target of a (then) unprecedented level of hateful invective because of his civil rights policies (which opponents saw as an attack on their “way of life” to be defended against by any means necessary), and because he was a member of the country’s Catholic minority (he was the first and still the only Catholic President). Sound familiar? For more parallels between 1963 and today, read these articles in the Daily Kos, Vanity Fair, and this interview with the author of the Vanity Fair article Sam Kashner discussing the parallels. Also check out what is considered to be the definitive book on JFK’s assassination, and Kennedy’s own book, Profiles in Courage. Finally, the video below (an enlarged version of the Zapruder film) is hard to watch, but it’s something that needs to be remembered.

 

46 years ago today

Lee Harvey Oswald shot JFK.

President Kennedy died

And the Nation cried.

 

He was America’s first and (so far) only Catholic President,

For which he was feared and hated

(That may sound ridiculous nowadays

But anti-Catholic bigotry then shouldn’t be understated).

 

He took action against segregation

By sending Federal troops and marshals to Mississippi.

George Wallace stood blocking the University of Alabama’s doorway

Until confronted by a Federal Deputy.

 

That same evening Kennedy addressed the Nation on radio and TV

And proposed what would become the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Johnson later predicted Dems would “lose the South for 50 years”

Because Southern whites wouldn’t vote Democratic any more.

 

In fact, that’s exactly what happened:

Southern politicians and white voters defected to the GOP.

Kennedy knew that would happen and moved forward anyway.

Did he suspect what the full price would be?

 

He also created the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women

To investigate gender discrimination.

Their final report was issued in October 1963

And was met by the Far Right with condemnation.

 

For these acts and his Catholicism, JFK was hated.

Posters saying he was “wanted for treason” circulated.

Some called for armed opposition to “protect their rights” and way of life.

There were threats against the President’s life.

 

The Religious Right attacked Kennedy viciously,

Saying he was a UN one-world Communist anti-Christian, as they could plainly see.

Kennedy’s most vocal critic H.L. Hunt hated Kennedy for the tax on oil exploration

(Hunt was later suspected of financing Kennedy’s assassination).

 

Hunt accused Kennedy of planning to take away peoples’ guns

(It sounds like today’s anti-Obama attacks are just reruns).

Hunt took out a full page ad in the Dallas Morning News

In which he Kennedy of being a Communist  accused.

 

Of course, right-wing blogs and Fox didn’t exsit in that day,

So the invective wasn’t as widespread as it is today.

But in hotbeds of hatred like Dallas, Kennedy was reviled as a traitor.

It didn’t take long for those words to fall on the ears of an unstable hater.

 

JFK travelled to Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963

To reconcile differences within the Democratic Party.

At 12:30 pm, two shots rang out.

Kennedy was hit in the back, and spun about.

 

The second shot hit him in the head,

And at 1:00 pm, Kennedy was pronouced dead.

Dallas schoolkids cheered when the announcement was made,

No doubt channeling the hatred their parents had displayed.

 

He had tried to makeAmericaa better place,

But there were those that Kennedy’s changes did not embrace.

Did Oswald consider himself a defender of liberty

When he committed his act of barbarity?

 

At Kennedy’s gravesite an eternal flame does burn

To remind us of the lesson that we must learn.

Things are not so different now from then.

Please let’s not let the same thing happen again.

Google search Kennedy antichrist

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Comments

9 Responses to “Dallas”

  1. Flyer Says:

    Yes, the similarities are alarming. There is so much hatred directed at Obama that his policies cannot be honestly debated.

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  9. bottle rocket corp Says:

    I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Exceptionally well written!

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