Friday, November 22, 2013

Dallas, JFK, And Whitewashing "The Fiftieth"

It's the light that I think of. It seems there was a different light in the early Sixties during the Kennedy presidency. I only know that time from photographs but that's what sticks out to me, like it's an endless Spring day. You can literally see the optimism. The Sixties of John Kennedy never came to be. We only got a warped, twisted version of that decade that dissolved into violence and disillusionment by the time it reached the end.

I know what cynics have to say, speaking from out of the dark. Those who reject the light also reject its treasures. They say such treasures can never be. But they can. We were headed towards the light, we were going to work through our issues and come out the other side. America hadn't made the commitment yet but we were on our way. To some, this represented an unbearable future, an eternal rejection that loses all reason in a mad fury.

Like Martin Luther King, just the sound of Kennedy's voice uplifts me, inspires me and makes my spirit soar. You really do start asking "Why not?" instead of "Why?" Why not step into the light? Why not do the good things that are possible? Why not bring our dreams to life? We were on the verge of breaking free from our chrysalis to find out who we really are. But that moment was lost and we haven't stopped running yet.

"November 22, 1963, the day Kennedy finally got it
through his head we didn't want him here."
- Dallas dark joke (there are others)

This accusatory ad was in the paper
while a handbill was also circulated
calling Kennedy a traitor

So why pick Dallas to kill a President? Was it just bad luck, a circumstance that fit the needed logistics or even simply random? It was none of those things. As much as the city image makers cringe at the thought of Dallas being labeled the "City of Hate" after the assassination, that we certainly are. Privately, we revel in it, wallowing in an anger seeking a justification it can never find. (But there's profit in the seeking of it!) Publicly, we pretend that's a thing of the past.

Of the major cities in America in the 1960 election, only Dallas voted for Nixon. The roots of ultra-conservatism run deep here in Texas. It was founded here by the oil men and the strain still runs through our blood today. Where do you think the Swiftboaters got their funding? Texas has a peculiar antipathy for the idea of a just government - a lethal one, in fact. It brings out a dangerous rage I've seen firsthand. I think to myself, "Now there's a person who can not be reasoned with."

No, if you want support for killing a Democrat, you've come to the right place. It's still here in the 21st century. Lie your country into a war and be applauded wherever you go - that's Big D for ya. John Wilkes Booth ran south, not north. People always go where they think is the most support. Especially when they know they are about to do a great wrong. It's not a conspiracy, just a natural human tendency. Dallas does not want to be known as the place most likely to support an assassin. But is repentance what I see?

Workers removed the famous X before "The Fiftieth"

Dallas citizens will honor the life, leadership and legacy of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 2013, the 50th anniversary of his death.

All those receiving admission to Dealey Plaza on Nov. 22 will be notified by email between Thursday, Oct. 10, and Tuesday, Oct. 15. The email will appear in your inbox from The 50th: Honoring the Memory of President John F. Kennedy. Due to limited space at Dealey Plaza, if you do not receive notification by Oct. 15, you will not receive admission.

The above is from the President John F. Kennedy Commemorative Foundation - based right here in Dallas! We luv ya now, Mr. President! 5,000 tickets were made available and elbow room will be at a premium. I asked a cop if I would be able to view the event without a ticket and he said there'd be no "line of sight" possible. Security is sky high with 24 hour police presence in the area days prior and a full FBI background check required before a ticket is issued.

Reports of tourists flocking to town are certainly true. I ran into a mother and son from New Jersey making a pilgrimage to Dallas. They were wondering where the famous X was and I explained it was gone. The city says they are repaving the road to remove "trip hazards". But that's only a thinly veiled excuse for yet another cover up. Want to know the most verboten word here on the fiftieth? "Assassination." Why, yes, John Kennedy did die here. Don't remember why or how, though!

Dealey6 City workers welding manhole covers shut

Officially, the event is to honor the life of John Kennedy. Unofficially, it's to whitewash our well deserved reputation as the City of Hate. Extremism was no stranger to Dallas, emanating from the highest places - including Ted Dealey, publisher of the Dallas Morning News. (It is Ted's father for whom the infamous Dealey Plaza is named.) How appropriate that name is linked to Kennedy's assassination. Read an excerpt from the book "Dallas 1963" explaining the radical depths to which Dealey had sunk. Even his crony conservatives came to abhor him.

The weather today is cold and rainy. It's been cloudy and gloomy here for days. It's as if the gods want to emphasize the loss of that brimming Sixties sunshine. We all make mistakes needing forgiving but the taking of a life cannot be undone. We can partially ameliorate by pausing to reflect on the path we have taken that led us to destruction. But the Sixties assassinations continued and Dallas is still a right wing haven of acidic hate.

I know what the New Jersey pilgrims came for. I still feel the aura every time I visit Dealey Plaza, like it's a portal to an age of dreams meant to be still haunting the area like a ghost. They were seeking a bit of that lost Kennedy magic, hoping against hope to recapture a glimmer of what we've lost. They will not find it here. We can only hope to find it from within.

Here are some photos from the nights leading up to "The Fiftieth":


Parking meters in the surrounding area were marked off limits

Dealey17 Gathered around the marker


Dealey19 View of the depository coming from Main Street as per Kennedy's route


Dealey39 I was able to make it onto the famous railroad bridge overlooking Dealey Plaza


Dealey35 Right where the X used to be

Dealey29 Media from around the country

Dealey21 One theory claims one of the shots bounced off this traffic signal

Dealey18 Conspiracy talk! You can literally find it every day here.

Didn't have my video camera so had to make do. But here's an example of what you'll hear.

Click here to see entire photo set.

As for my own theory, if I had to bet money I'd say there was a second gunman. Oswald's choosing of a slow bolt rifle could only be to provide cover time for the real gunman. Also, the far easier shot would be as Kennedy turned off Main street onto level ground heading towards Oswald's perch. But there's no way to hide a second shooter there. Also, who can really believe Ruby was some sort of super patriot which drove him to kill a man in cold blood?

This started as a mob hit. They brought in other elements out of necessity. With the Red scare on full alert all they needed was a Commie patsy to forever seal the truth.

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