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The extent to which the release has been made into a drama, first about the potential release of these files, then the release itself, then a recounting of the most popular conspiracy theories, is one example of how impulsive and frenetic our public dialogue has become," he continues.Finally, he calls on readers to take personal responsibility in what they choose to consume.
But as the years pass, this painful event seems to be passing through a transition from memory to history, as evidenced by Mimi Swartz’s profile of the late Nellie Connally and her account of Dallas’s attempt to quietly celebrate the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s death.
Last week's declassification of federal files related to President Kennedy's assassination was a chance for the nation to revisit its feelings about the 35th president and his death.
At half past noon on November 22, 1963, president John F.
Kennedy was shot and killed while he was riding down Dallas’s Dealy Plaza in a presidential motorcade with his wife, Jaqueline, and Texas Governor John Connally and Connally’s wife, Nellie.
Early speculation came from assassination researchers Josiah Thompson and Richard Sprague who noticed the open umbrella in a series of photographs. Fletcher Prouty is that the umbrella may have been used to fire a dart with a paralyzing agent at Kennedy to immobilize his muscles and make him a "sitting duck" for an assassination.
Thompson and Sprague suggested that the "umbrella man" may have been acting as a signaler of some kind, opening his umbrella to signal "go ahead" and then raising it to communicate "fire a second round" to other gunmen. He claimed still to have the umbrella and did not know he had been the subject of controversy.Lawrence Wright recounted his struggles as a young man, growing up under the assassination’s shadow in 1983, in an essay entitled “Why do they hate us so much?“: “It was a shock how much the world hated us—and why? He was a Marxist and an atheist; you could scarcely call him a product of the city."Nobody is going to think critically for us," he writes."Each of us has the individual responsibility to maintain perspective, or at least to try.He argues that the media coverage of the release was a "distraction" from other issues, including climate change, systemic racism, income inequality, and the state of health care in America, and he chastises those publications that perpetuate the "myths, drama and conspiracy" of President Kennedy's death."To be sure, declassification is a good thing for a democracy.The more government transparency, the better," he writes, while also critiquing the conspiracies that were in many ways created when the documents were shrouded in secrecy.In the aftermath of the assassination, two men can be seen sitting together on the sidewalk on the right side of the photograph.The "umbrella man" is the one in the dark jacket, farthest to the right.Then Oliver Stone stirred everybody up again with JFK, the movie; Mark Seal’s story describes the reenactment of the assassination in tragicomic detail.This collection of heartfelt condolence letters to the First Lady show that Texans felt enormous anguish and guilt over the tragedy.