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Family and Friends is my everyday journal. Captain's Log is where I pontificate on religion and politics.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Fifty Years in respective

Everyone is chiming in on the fifty years since the death of a president by an assassin's bullet. No reason I shouldn't put my two cent worth in.
  • I was ten on a day everyone alive would have burned into their memories and now fifty times the news media has abetted bringing back those painful days.
  • I was fifteen when I first saw the parade route for the motorcade and immediately realized no one in their right mind would leave the freeway for a short trip around Dealy Plaza and then get back on the freeway. It was intended as a kill zone. Did anyone question the man in charge of planning this route, arrest him and execute him? Of course not. This was a random act by a deranged man. Give me a break.
  • Freshman year in college we had a track meet in Dallas and the coach pointed out Dealy Plaza as we whisked by it. I got all of a fraction of a second to take a look. The year I lived in Fort Worth and the summer I spent in Canton while Dad was in hospice and I flew in and out of Dallas a number of times I never felt like revisiting the site.
Growing up in the 50's, 60's and being a college student, getting married (twice) in the 70's I lived through perhaps the most tumultuous decades in American history. I was born he year Ike was sworn in so I've lived under a lot of presidents. I've seen the deification of Kennedy and now the feet of clay. Here's my perspective both personal and researched. I'm about to piss everyone off.
  1. Kennedy's most lasting legacy was dying. (I'll wait until all the booing stops)
  2. He was in office for 1000 days and he was no Roosevelt with a super majority in congress. He didn't have time to accomplish much.
  3. Bay of Pigs he inherited from Eisenhower and was a learning experience. Missile Crisis, thank God Nixon lost the election or cockroaches would be the only ones living on the planet.
  4. He did launch the space race and peace corps.
  5. Civil Rights act, voting rights act,  food stamps, Medicaid, Medicare, HUD were on the democratic platform, but stalled in congress.
  6. Johnson was able to pass the Civil Rights, voting rights act, and the war on poverty after his election in 1964 with a comfortable majority in congress due to sympathy from the voters after the assassination.
Everything Johnson was able to accomplish in 1965-66 for the minorities and the social safety net is really Kennedy's legacy. He died for it.

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