Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Kennedy Assassination - Marked by Silence

New York Times

"I am absolutely sure he never knew what hit him," Dr. Tom Shires, chief surgeon, Parkland Hospital, Dallas, November 22, 1963

If you remember John F. Kennedy's assassination, you'll agree that we didn't know what hit us either. It was as shocking and incomprehensible as the attacks on the World Trade Center almost four decades later.

The Kennedy assassination was the seminal experience for the Baby Boomer generation. It changed our lives profoundly, just as 9/11 changed our children's. Our innocence, our complacency, our sense of safety, fair play and trust in American invincibility were shattered in an instant, never to be truly regained.

Today is the 42nd anniversary of that horrible day, yet not one major newspaper in the country makes note of the milestone. The most I could find was the regular On This Day feature of the New York Times.

I'm frankly stunned. Well, wait, Maybe I'm not. The national news media is so busy ducking and covering they don't dare risk their corporate cojones to take on the Big Issues. So why should we expect them to spare a footnote for an event that literally changed the course of modern history.

Those of us who were coming of age then are running the world now. We were profoundly affected by the assassination of our president and the events that followed. Those events shared in shaping our world view, and for some, our politics and ultimate direction.

Our future was dramatically and irrevocably altered. The present reality reflects that, and deserves--no, demands--review and recognition of how it happened. And of what the consequences were and continue to be.

But sadly, politics and the news media haven't changed so very much in all these years. Oh sure, back then, the sex lives of politicians weren't splashed all over the headlines. But Congress and the White House still manipulate the news media, and through them the public with sinister ease. And the stakes are so much higher now.

The generation of tomorrow needs information. Not silence. Not lies. Not spin. Not self-serving attacks made for political gain. They need the perspective of history. They need the truth. They can handle the truth. Our future depends on it.

Too bad the media can't seem to supply it.

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Blogger David Goldenberg said...

I share your thoughts. Tim Russert mentioned the assassination briefly on the phone with Imus, in the middle of not mentioning who told him what about Imus...so much for media highlights.

I'm a child of the fifties, and Pearl Harbor semed like ancient history at that time, even though it was only a decade earlier--can you imagine what kids think today about something that happened 40+ years ago? Might as well be the Revolutionary War, whenever that was...!

2:27 PM  

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