The assassination of JFK Essay

This essay has a total of 2883 words and 14 pages.

The assassination of JFK



The Assassination of John F. Kennedy
By: Natalie Bell
Monday, June 5, 2000.
Presented to: Mr. Gear
HUS3A

The assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 is an event in American History
that is often remembered. John F. Kennedy's assassination hit the world with the biggest
shock of the 1960's. This became a world event because televison broadcasted the
assassination and the funeral. In this way, his assassination touched everyone's heart and
made the world come together to personally grieve for the end of ‘Camelot'. Even people
today who were not alive at the time of the assassination are still intrigued by the life
and death of John F. Kennedy. The intrigue often extends to the entire Kennedy family.
This essay will give you the facts about the assassination, illuminate how the American
people reacted at the time, analyze why they reacted as they did and why almost forty
years later, John F. Kennedy and his family continue to be of such great interest to many.



Assassination Facts
On November 22, 1963 at 12:30 p.m. a man with a gun sat behind a window in the Texas
School Book Depository above Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. There were over four thousand
people cheering and waving as President John F. Kennedy, his wife Jacqueline Bouvier
Kennedy, and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife Nellie rode by. That afternoon
people seemed friendly but the Secret Service who were guarding the President knew that
they weren't friendly enough. A day earlier before the President arrived in Dallas there
had been hate posters and leaflets denouncing the President. Dallas News had printed a
full page advertisement criticizing John F. Kennedy for his abandonment of the
constitution and the softness towards Moscow and communism. The Secret Services knew that
this was bound to make some people furious with the President so they began to identify
potential dangerous groups in Dallas that would try to harm the President. One of the
potentially dangerous groups that they identified were, the Cubans. They were upset at the
President's relationship with Cuba. Another group were racists. They were angry at the
President's support of the Civil Rights Legislation. The last group that were a potential
threat were the Conservatives who believed the President was ‘soft' on communism. A few
weeks earlier, Adlai Stevenson, the United States delegate to the United Nations, had been
heckled, spat upon and hit with a placard by a angry group of demonstrators. Because of
these groups, the Secret Service wanted the President to use a protective bubble-top over
the open limousine. The President refused to use it because he felt he didn't need it as
he had only seen happy and nice people in Texas. So the President ordered that the bubble
top not be used. Even though there were many things that the Secret Service was worried
about the motorcade went on and the president was not worried.


As the President passed out of sight of the Dealey Plaza, the man in the sixth floor
window of the Texas School Book Depository aimed and fired his rifle. John F. Kennedy was
hit first in the throat, then in the head which shattered his skull. The governor John
Connally, was also shot through the back. The wives sat and watched in disbelief as the
limousine pulled out of the motorcade and rushed them to the Parkland Hospital. On
November 22, 1963 at one o'clock in the afternoon the President of the United States, the
one who was going to change the world was pronounced dead. At 2:15 that afternoon, a young
man named Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested for the murder of John F. Kennedy. Two days later
on National Televison, Harvey Lee Oswald was shot to death by a Dallas night club owner
Jack Ruby.



The Countries Reactions
The former President of the United States of America, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was buried
in Arlington National Cemetery on November 25, 1963. Leaders from ninety- two countries
attended the funeral to show their support to the United States. More then four million
people lined the streets to pay their respect to the Kennedy family. Jacqueline Kennedy
lit an eternal flame over his grave while her two children looked on. People around the
world reacted with disbelief, shock and grief. Business and schools closed as American
daily life virtually came to a halt. For four days, until the President was buried, people
huddled around the television set and radios in disbelief and grief. In Copenhagen,
Denmark thousands of people brought flowers to the United States Embassy. There were so
many flowers brought that by the next morning the building was surrounded by flowers six
feet deep. In West Berlin, people placed lit candles in darkened windows. Almost every
single American born before 1957 can remember where he or she was on the day John F.
Kennedy died. There is no President who is ever popular with everyone; John F. Kennedy was
no exception, but his death hit everyone. The world came together because it is always a
shock when a leader is murdered. This was particulary so in the United States, which has
seen relatively few political assassinations. A man by the name of Arthur M.
Schelsinger.Jr said it best;


"He had so little time...yet he had accomplished so much: the new hope for Peace on Earth,
the elimination of nuclear testing in the atmosphere and the abolition of nuclear
diplomacy, the new polices toward Latin America and the third world, the reordering of
America defense, the emancipation of the American Negro, the revolution in National
economic policy, the concern for poverty, the stimulus to the arts, the fight for the
reason against extremism and mythology. Lifting us beyond our capacities, he gave his
country back to its best self, wiping away the world's impression of an old nation of old
men, weary, played out, fearful of ideas, change and its future; he taught mankind that
the process of rediscovering America was not over. He re-established the Republic as the
first generation of our leaders saw it- young, brave, civilized, rational, gay, tough,
questing, exultant in the excitement and potentiality of history. He transformed the
American spirt....Above all he gave the world for an imperishable moment the vision of a
leader who greatly understood the terror and the hope, the diversity and the possibility
of life on this planet and who made people look beyond nation and race to the future of
humanity"(A Thousand Days, p 120).






Concluding Analysis
The country reacted in the ways that they did because John F. Kennedy was a young
President who had put many hopes and dreams in front of a nation. His death shocked the
American people. The old political leadership represented by President Eisenhower was now
history. The country had been looking forward to many years with this new President. They
were not expecting him to only stay for just over one thousand days. People compared the
Kennedy White House with Camelot,'the idyllic court of King Arthur, the legendary Celtic
king, where for "one brief, shining moment" the strongest and most virtuous knights
gathered' (A hero of our time, p 563). Now the King was dead. Jimmy Carter, a Georgia
farmer, who later became President of the United States in 1976 said " I wept openly for
the first time in ten years, for the first time since my own father died"(A hero of our
time, p 566). The Kennedy family has kept itself in the eye of the world ever since the
death of John F. Kennedy. The Kennedy family intrigues people today because it was such a
tragedy. People do not get tired reading and learning about this amazing family who has
shaped American politics and history to what it is today. Also people do not get tired of
writing about the Kennedy's because they think that there has to be an answer to why John
F. Kennedy dies and how his family survives so much tragedy. Everything was left
unfinished after John. F Kennedy's death. People consider the Kennedy's to be the Royal
Family of America. Yes, that is true but, if John. F Kennedy did not die in November 1963
and there was closure to his Presidency, would he just be just another President? This is
one of the many questions that will never get answered.




The Assassination of John F. Kennedy


The assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 is an event in American History
that is often remembered. John F. Kennedy's assassination hit the world with the biggest
shock of the 1960's. This became a world event because televison broadcasted the
assassination and the funeral. In this way, his assassination touched everyone's heart and
made the world come together to personally grieve for the end of ‘Camelot'. Even people
today who were not alive at the time of the assassination are still intrigued by the life
and death of John F. Kennedy. The intrigue often extends to the entire Kennedy family.
This essay will give you the facts about the assassination, illuminate how the American
people reacted at the time, analyze why they reacted as they did and why almost forty
years later, John F. Kennedy and his family continue to be of such great interest to many.



Assassination Facts
On November 22, 1963 at 12:30 p.m. a man with a gun sat behind a window in the Texas
School Book Depository above Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. There were over four thousand
people cheering and waving as President John F. Kennedy, his wife Jacqueline Bouvier
Kennedy, and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife Nellie rode by. That afternoon
people seemed friendly but the Secret Service who were guarding the President knew that
they weren't friendly enough. A day earlier before the President arrived in Dallas there
had been hate posters and leaflets denouncing the President. Dallas News had printed a
full page advertisement criticizing John F. Kennedy for his abandonment of the
constitution and the softness towards Moscow and communism. The Secret Services knew that
this was bound to make some people furious with the President so they began to identify
potential dangerous groups in Dallas that would try to harm the President. One of the
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