I am not one of those who sees a political plot behind everything. No nefarious conspiracies haunt my mind. At the same time, I remain skeptical and sometimes critical of some accepted truths and I like to investigate and make up my own mind.
For those who lived through it, the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy was one of those pivotal turning points in history. It was a terrible wake up call that, indeed, bad things happen to good people, and that they can happen right in front of us. It had a cultural effect much like the Sept. 11th terrorist attack. Little seemed the same after the event. It was the horror of sudden death, the helplessness to Fate turning unkind.
John F. Kennedy was a young and handsome man, whose powerful position as President of the United States of America was no protection against tragedy. The shock of his death was such that those who lived through it, and those who study the event now, are often unable to grasp a real understanding of it. The urge to understand, and the difficulty in doing so has spawned a whole sub-culture dedicated to the event. These are people who feel there is still more to be told, still more "truth out there."
These are the conspiracy buffs. They are a surprisingly large group, complete with various leaders and libraries, full of various bits of literature. Questioning, proving, disproving. All searching for the real story.
While I do not recall the name, or the author's name even, the first conspiracy book I ever read strongly impressed me with the arguments inside. The book got me to question the 'official' records, and to wonder what had really happened, and why? I started to read more. That, I guess, was a mistake.
The second book I read also questioned the generally accepted facts. It also questioned some of the very points the first book had 'proven'. A harsh critical eye revealed flaws in both conspiracy books. As many flaws as they found in the Warren Reports, the 'official summing up'. The second book agreed that the truth had not been told. But it disagreed with the first books results. It asked some of the same questions, but came up with much different answers.
The result was a confusing muddle. I had started off questioning the record, and I ended with questioning those also questioning. After a book or two more, I gave up the effort. Could anyone actually find out the truth about this long past event?
A trip to Texas got me thinking about the topic again. I, of course, visited the
site. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. The Texas School Book Depository. I walked on the grassy knoll. When traffic stopped, I walked out onto the street, and stood on the yellow 'X' marking the spot where the bullet hit. I stood there, and looked up at the rather distant window from where, it is claimed, the shots were fired. I remember immediately thinking that if Lee Harvey Oswald made that shot, he must have been a heck of a shot!
I returned to the sidewalk, deep in thought. An expert would have great, great difficulty making that shot. When you add the factors of haste and movement, it would be near impossible.
A screech of brakes called me back into the real world. A group of four others, from the ever-present tourists, had seen my action, and had gone out onto the road. They had not timed the traffic lights, and the busy Dallas traffic came at them in a flash. They had to run off the road as the cars whizzed by.
I had a long drive home. Several days, in fact, alone in the car, and thinking thing over. Oswald's words kept ringing in my ears. He had said: "I'm just a patsy!" and then he was shot. Words understood by some to mean that others were involved, that he was just stuck taking the blame. Who were these mysterious others?
While crime investigation can be extremely complex, there are some fundamental principals that are easy. For example, in trying to find out who did a certain deed, you begin by looking for anyone who profited from that deed being done. Who would have reason to do such a thing? Those who would gain from it.
That is when it hit me. Who had indeed gained from the J.F.K. assassination? It is obvious when you think of it! The hair is the first clue.
A hysterical transference of repressed J.F.K. assassination shock and grief created fame and fortune for the new cultural icons who were waiting in the wings, seemingly, for just that moment in time. Think back and remember.
Beatlemania swept America a mere eight weeks after the assassination. The Beatles rode that wave to their huge success. Could it be any more obvious?