Fifty Years Later: The Legacy of JFK

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Much of America will stop for a moment today to observe the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination. Tens of thousands turned out for a moment of silence in Dallas, and the media hype is unavoidable. The President was gunned down in Dealey Plaza in the midst of the Cold War, at the beginning of the civil rights revolution. His presidency of less than three years had its ups and downs, but polls consistently show most Americans call it one of the greatest. Historians aren't so sure. So why is JFK so highly regarded? Why haven't negative revelations tarnished his image? We separate the man from the myth and look at how the memories of presidents are shaped by symbolism as well as historical facts.




Warren Olney