JFK 1917-1963

On this day in 1963 our 35th President was assassinated.  Almost everyone alive that day remembers where they were when they heard the news.  I’ll never forget seeing Walter Cronkite announced that the President had died.  I’ll never forget the nation-wide grieving.  I’ll never forget the smooth transition of power.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

John F. Kennedy

Like every President, Kennedy made mistakes.   Some, like Vietnam and the Cuban embargo, lasted well past his death, though historians have questioned if they’d lasted had he lived.

Similarly, some of his accomplishments were far reaching.  The Peace Corps, the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, the push for civil rights, and the commitment to space exploration.

On this 45th anniversary of his death what sticks in our memories was his ability to galvanize and unify the American public, and his ability to communicate a sense of optimism and hope.



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44 responses to “JFK 1917-1963

  1. dog's eye view

    I remember JFK. We have him on Super 8, from his June 1963 visit to Honolulu, where we lived while my dad was stationed in Hawaii.

    Watching him later, his witty or astute responses at press conferences, and not talking down to or past the American public: miss that, and hope that style is on its way back in.

  2. I also posted about the year that Kennedy died using a writing assignment given to my son and the actual broadcast from a music station in Dallas to try to show what life was like before November 22, 1963


    You could almost draw a bright line between the America that existed prior to the JFK assassination and the American that existed after the RFK assassination. The world turned over completely.

  3. 45 years later and it still hurts. Spot on Jamie, one of those horrific events that become a dividing line in our history.

  4. dog's eye view

    Do you think people around the world, particularly in the lesser developed world, as we used to say, have pictures of LBJ or Reagan or any of the later American presidents up in their homes or worksheds?

    People liked Ike, but I never saw that many photos or posters of him.

    If “W”s mug is up there, look for bulletholes or punctures.

    Obama looks like he is going to be an American president for the world, as were Nixon (for China), Reagan and Clinton, although not to JFK’s extent.

  5. chefsheila

    JFK’s first year in Office i was 4 years old and we had already purchased that record about the first family. It was mesmerising for me.

    We went on vacation to the East Coast and stopped by DC to take in the sights. My dad being a joker had told me that I could have dinner with the President. When we went by the White House, I assumed that we were going for dinner and it didn’t happen. So I cried. lol My Dad never promised me anything outlandish again. I take people at their word.

    I was in 1st grade in San Diego, Ca. We were doing math after Lunch and Recess. The teacher came in the class crying and announced that the President was dead. A little girl behind me started crying, but I didn’t quite understand.

    It was brought home to me after watching my Mom and Dad glued to the TV. Then ALL of us kids being required to sit and watch the entire funeral out of respect on a Saturday Afternoon. It was pure agony until I saw John John Salute. I’m glad my did made us all watch, because I have never forgotten.

  6. chefsheila

    I have heard of people in other countries keeping JFK’s picture, but no one else.

    I would think that Obama’s pic will be in Africa, but lets see if he can live up to that.

  7. Are you talking about the comedy album sheila?

  8. I have it it in mp3 format, if you want I can put it into a zip file and you can download it from my web site

  9. chefsheila

    oh wow! That would be so much fun to listen to that again. I was jealous because Carolyne had that pony!

  10. I’ll email you the link when I have it uploaded, I assume you know how to deal with a zipped file.

  11. chefsheila

    Yes and thanks!

  12. chefsheila

    For all us that need a weekly injection of confidence, Here is the latest President elect weekly address.

  13. You can’t make this shit up:

  14. dnd

    The version I saw on TV this am showed a family Thanksgiving dinner, complete with a huge turkey. The commentators on TV couldn’t help laughing after yesterday’s “Gobblegate” where Palin did a photo op pardoning a turkey, and then was interviews with some guy beheading turkeys in the background.

    I guess her PAC quickly edited that out 😉

  15. dog's eye view

    Who’s the black dude in the hat? What century is he from?

    That one could be a parody.

  16. dog's eye view

    Their website is under construction.

  17. “Black Quakers For Palin”?

  18. dnd

    They’re actors…

  19. dog's eye view

    I’m thinking that family with all the kids in arms could say: We quiver for Sarah Palin.”

  20. dog's eye view

    Or: Sarah Palin makes us quiver.

  21. They’re a joke, and not a funny one at that!

  22. dog's eye view

    To turn the conversation back to JFK (and RFK): they would look at our fine GOP VP candidate, and the election results, and think “Appalachia won” in some of the battles they started.

  23. dog's eye view

    Gail Collins speaking sense, yet again.

    I don’t think this is a crazy idea at all. Too much happening day by day. Bush is just waiting to get out of Dodge. Going early — his VP first — would be the most statesmanlike thing Bush has done, all second term.

    “Thanksgiving is next week, and President Bush could make it a really special holiday by resigning.

    Seriously. We have an economy that’s crashing and a vacuum at the top. Bush — who is currently on a trip to Peru to meet with Asian leaders who no longer care what he thinks — hasn’t got the clout, or possibly even the energy, to do anything useful. His most recent contribution to resolving the fiscal crisis was lecturing representatives of the world’s most important economies on the glories of free-market capitalism.

    Putting Barack Obama in charge immediately isn’t impossible. Dick Cheney, obviously, would have to quit as well as Bush. In fact, just to be on the safe side, the vice president ought to turn in his resignation first. (We’re desperate, but not crazy.) Then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would become president until Jan. 20. Obviously, she’d defer to her party’s incoming chief executive, and Barack Obama could begin governing.”

    Gail Collins. Time for Him to Go.


  24. dnd

    Classic Gail Collins: “On the downside, a few right-wing talk-show hosts might succumb to apoplexy. That would, of course, be terrible, but I’m afraid we might have to take the risk in the name of a greater good.”

    Unfortunately he’s got too much damage yet to do before Jan 20:

    “WASHINGTON – A Bush administration proposal that would eliminate the input of independent government scientists in some endangered species reviews would be tossed out if Democrat Barack Obama wins the White House, his campaign says. ”


  25. dog's eye view

    It’s revolting how Bush appointees are burrowing into the civil service.

    That was never meant to be. We have seen how justice was not done at the Department of Justice, where Mukasey let the wrongly hired attorneys remain in place.

    It would have been fairer to dismiss the whole class, telling them they could reapply for their jobs, and evaluating them anew on credentials, ability and record, rather than on ideology, as they were hired.

    A Monica Goodling can do a lot of damage, and it is not just to allow the civil service protections benefit wrongdoers.

  26. I look like I’ve been in a bar fight, and I feel cranky, and I feel like whining.

  27. dnd

    Careful Brian. We’ve got a five dollar fine for whining:

  28. I’m touched by your support dnd!

  29. dnd

    Always glad to help Brian 😉

  30. if it weren’t for this drainage tube stitched to the inside of my lip right now I’d be biting my tongue!

  31. Feds took over two more banks this weekend.

  32. dog's eye view

    Good morning all.

    Brian: thank goodness we don’t chat via webcameras. We would be wondering who you insulted once too often! Hope you are feeling spiffier today.

  33. dog's eye view

    For drafting Sarah: I say Mosul or Kandahar would be good placements for her.

  34. dog's eye view

    I see that Gail Collin’s op ed, Time for Him to Go, is NYTime’s #1 most emailed item.

    Wonder how long until it percolates into public discussion and TV/cable news.

    Don’t watch much TV, so please advise if you see topic being raised.

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