Thursday, November 22, 2012

Forty Nine

Being in Dealey Plaza at half past noon on the anniversary of President Kennedy’s assassination is an incomparable experience.

Whether you care deeply about who killed Kennedy or think the whole conspiracy thing is a crock, you cannot help being impressed, for better or worse, by the reality of Dealey Plaza on a sunny midday in late November, and by the people who show up there to remember JFK.

November 22nd is a date synonymous with national calamity, like December 7th or 9/11. The implications of the assassination loomed over the United States for decades, but I don’t think it does any more. Between the passage of so much time and the stigma associated with “conspiracy theory,” the issue has been effectively neutered.

As I grew up, though, the assassination seemed ominous and real, especially on each anniversary. The next day’s paper always had a picture of surviving Kennedys gathered at JFK’s grave at Arlington. One of them, usually Teddy, leaned forward to place flowers by that eternal flame, while the rest knelt beside him, their heads bent in prayer. That picture didn’t change much from year to year – except gradually, as strange fates and the inevitable claims of time left fewer family members to mark the occasion.

This post is extracted from a larger work.

See also a similar post from 11-22-11 ...

And, check out some Dallas pictures by Truly Yours Truly (but not Roy Truly). They look best through Safari, or Mozilla Firefox. Chrome is okay. Internet Explorer is not so good.

No comments:

Post a Comment