Robert F. Kennedy Assassination

What America Needs Today: Another Mr. Rogers To Promote Love, Compassion, Empathy, And Tolerance

Last night, this blogger and author had the privilege to attend the documentary–“Won’t You Be My Neighbor?”–about the life and career of Fred Rogers, known as Mr. Rogers on PBS for over thirty years, on his show “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood”.

Fred Rogers was a beautiful human being, who promoted good self image among children, emphasizing how each of us is unique and special.

He promoted love, compassion, empathy, and tolerance on issues of race, religion, sexuality, gender, and disabilities.

He made the lives of innumerable children, now adults, far better than they might have been without his show on PBS.

He helped children through the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy in 1968; the Challenger Astronaut Disaster of 1986; and the evil of September 11.

He promoted people accepting each other as they are, and looking for the good in people.

His show, through puppets and supporting cast, made children and their parents happier and more secure than they would have been otherwise.

In a time as now, in 2018, we so desperately need a Mr. Rogers to overcome the horrible sins of hatred, greed, selfishness, racism, nativism, misogyny, Islamophobia, antisemitism, prejudice against the disabled, and the poor of all backgrounds, represented by the total evil of Donald Trump and his supporting cast and base.

We need a political leader who will come to the forefront and overcome the cancer and absolute evil of Donald Trump, and take us in a different direction.

It was hard to watch this documentary and not have tears and despair, but there are other Fred Rogers out there, maybe not yet showing up in government, but playing their smaller roles as teachers, nurses, doctors, social workers, and others dedicated to making life better for all of us, not just the elite wealthy who could not give a damn about anyone but themselves!

Tom Hanks will portray Fred Rogers in a film to come out in 2019, entitled “You Are My Friend”.

Fifty Years Since Robert F. Kennedy’s Assassination: What Could Have Been

Impossible to believe, but it has been a half century since Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, right after winning the California primary in the 1968 Democratic Presidential race.

The course of history changed dramatically with that horrendous event.

It led to the Presidency of Richard Nixon.

It led to the rise of the Right in American politics, begun under Nixon, greatly expanding under Ronald Reagan, and reaching its most destructive stage under Donald Trump.

It seems highly likely that Robert F. Kennedy would have been elected President, and would have transformed the future of America in a very different direction than it took at the time.

The war in Vietnam would have ended sooner, and saved many lives on both sides of the war.

The Supreme Court would have been dramatically different if RFK had had four appointments, instead of Richard Nixon.

The reforms of his brother, John F. Kennedy, and his successor, Lyndon B. Johnson, would have continued, and led to a more equitable, fair minded government.

Instead of taking steps backward, civil rights and civil liberties would have been greatly enhanced.

No one is saying that Robert F. Kennedy would have been a perfect President, and he had his own demons, including his association with Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s, and his often secretive and narrow minded views and personality shortcomings that every human being has.

But it can be believed that Robert F. Kennedy would have made America a greater nation than it turned out to be in the past half century!

This is the time for my readers and supporters to read Chapter 10 of my book, ASSASSINATIONS, THREATS, AND THE AMERICAN PRESIDENCY: FROM ANDREW JACKSON TO BARACK OBAMA (Rowman Littlefield Publishers, 2015, Paperback 2017), available from the publisher, and from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books A Million.

Robert F. Kennedy, The “Un Trump”? Two Wealthy, Privileged People, And Their Diverse Evolution

Two NBC/MSNBC anchors, Chris Matthews and Lawrence O’Donnell, have just published books on the life of Robert F. Kennedy, and on the Presidential Election of 1968, respectively.

Both books are well worth your attention, as they bring back a half century ago, when a wealthy, privileged person, Robert F. Kennedy, united white working class and minority working class people together in a time of tumult, making him a rare political leader.

He also attracted the support of wealthier liberals, and had the capability to unite the country in a time of the civil rights movement and the war in Vietnam.

Had he not been assassinated, RFK would likely have been the Democratic Party nominee, instead of Hubert Humphrey, and would have likely defeated Richard Nixon, and there would have been no Watergate scandal.

No one is saying that RFK would have been God, but certainly, the history of the United States would have been better with him than with Richard Nixon.

Now we have a leader of similar wealth and privilege, but with a totally different bent on every issue imaginable.

Donald Trump revels in dividing people, and using race, religion, and ethnicity to cause tumult and turmoil.

Donald Trump does not have a decent bone in his body, and sees everything in terms of the dollar sign.

Donald Trump has no concern for the average American’s life and future, and instead, promotes demagoguery and hate.

The damage he has done in the year since his election tomorrow, November 8, is so long lasting, that despite no legislative accomplishments, he has set back the nation in so many ways, often to before the years of the New Deal in the 1930s.

It is as if we are in a time warp, and back in the 1920s before the Great Depression and World War II.

And it is highly likely that the damage he has perpetrated in one year will lead to another Great Depression, social turmoil, and World War III, since he has no clue or understanding of domestic or foreign affairs, and only the top one percent will benefit from his destructive agenda.

So Robert F. Kennedy is indeed the “Un Trump”, but sadly, we have no one on the horizon at this moment who seems capable of emerging with the image and agenda of Robert F. Kennedy.

If we did find such a person, we would have optimism about the long range future of the nation, so the goal must be to find the right individual to lead the Democratic Party into the future, and return to the RFK commitment to social, economic, and political change.

49 Years Since Robert Kennedy’s Assassination: The Beginning Of The End Of The Triumph Of Liberalism In The 1960s

It is now 49 years since Senator Robert F. Kennedy of New York was tragically assassinated in Los Angeles, where I am right now, in my first visit to the number two city in America.

RFK was seen as likely to win the Democratic Presidential nomination in 1968, and it is believed that he would have defeated former Vice President Richard Nixon in a close race, without being tied to the Vietnam War policy of Lyndon B. Johnson, which Democratic nominee Hubert Humphrey had as an albatross around his neck, from which he was unable to escape.

It often seems as if RFK’s death marked a turning point to the right, from which America has never fully recovered, despite the best efforts of Barack Obama, the most liberal President since LBJ, but with the reality of a strong Republican opposition that helped to prevent much of his agenda.

Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, while certainly more “liberal” than any Republican President in the past half century, were unable, and also to a great extent, unwilling to go anywhere as far as Obama attempted.

So in a sense, America lost its liberal champion, which Ted Kennedy represented after his brother’s death, but due to his own Chappaquiddick scandal, was unable to promote, with one failed attempt in 1980 against President Carter.

RFK was certainly one of the most talented and creative politicians we have seen, and had a broad appeal, and his goals and aims to unite people of all backgrounds in promoting progressive change, remain the goal of Democrats as they look ahead to 2020, and wish to find the best Presidential nominee possible.

Secret Service In Crisis Which Threatens Safety Of President, Vice President, And Presidential Candidates!

New revelations make clear that the Secret Service is in crisis, and that President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and the multitude of Presidential candidates cannot feel relaxed that they are safe.

With the mounting gun violence, increase in domestic terrorism, and the rapidly increased threat from Al Qaeda and ISIL (ISIS) being evident, we need a strong, disciplined, well trained, and competent Secret Service.

But many blunders have occurred, including the recent White House Jumper Joseph Caput0; the sex scandals of Secret Service agents overseas; the misbehavior of some agents including dangerous driving and too much drinking when due to go on duty in a short time frame; and the evident cronyism in the power structure of the Secret Service.

In the 114 years that the Secret Service has protected the President, there has never been awareness or knowledge of so many shortcomings and inadequacies in this most important agency.

The fear is that if the Secret Service does not improve its record very rapidly, which is unlikely, that we could witness a tragedy which would undermine national confidence and unity, similar to the John F. Kennedy or Robert F. Kennedy assassination, or the Ronald Reagan serious wounding from an assassination attempt!

1968 Political Turmoil Over Vietnam Now Being Repeated Over Middle East Terrorism Threat In 2016

In 1968, the nation was bitterly divided over the war in Vietnam, and a major Presidential candidate, Robert F. Kennedy, became a victim of the turmoil over that, but also of the Middle East conflict, with the Six Day War of 1967 provoking the assassination of RFK by a Palestinian Arab immigrant, who happened to be Christian, but is often perceived as the beginning of the issue of Middle East terrorism come to America’s home front.

After the Paris terror attack by ISIL (ISIS), it is clear that we are going to become a major target for similar kinds of attacks in public places, and also, it has often been wonderment that we have not had suicide bombers in this country, and it is likely we will experience that as well.

The danger is that fear and reality will lead America to elect an extremist right wing candidate, such as Donald Trump or Ted Cruz to the Presidency, which would undermine American democracy and our basic civil liberties.

Ironically, the terrorists will have won if we end up going hysterical, and allow the domestic reforms and civil liberties advancements, which have been the hallmark of the past century, to be lost in the desire for security!

Do not be shocked that we might see a real threat to the life of the President or some Presidential candidate over the next year to the election, and it might be from Middle East terrorism, or could be from a right wing National Rifle Association fanatic who decides he must eliminate someone who is seen as the danger to the future of “traditional values” in an America under siege!

The Secret Service needs, immediately, more membership, more training, more preparation for what is likely to come!

47 Years Since The Assassination Of Robert F. Kennedy: The Might Have Beens!

Today, June 5, in the year 1968, 47 years ago, New York Senator Robert F. Kennedy, an active seeker of the Democratic Presidential nomination, had just won the California Primary over Senator Eugene McCarthy of Minnesota.

It seemed as if RFK was on the way to the Democratic nomination, although Vice President Hubert Humphrey, who had not entered the primaries, had a strong backing from party bosses, labor unions, and city mayors and many Senators and Governors, so there was great uncertainty as to what might happen at the Chicago Convention at the end of August.

Tragically, however, history was transformed, as RFK was assassinated by a Palestinian Christian immigrant, Sirhan Sirhan, who was angered at RFK’s backing of Israel in the year earlier Six Day War, in which Israel won territory from Egypt, Jordan and Syria, with the war beginning precisely on that date in 1967!

There is still debate and speculation on the RFK murder, with some believing it was a conspiracy with more than one gunman involved.

In any case, RFK comes closest to any non Presidential nominee to be considered a likely winner of the Presidency, had he not been killed, so therefore the “Might Have Been” issue arises.

My forthcoming book on August 15, available with a 30 percent discount from Rowman Littlefield, with the indicated four digit code, devotes Chapter 10 to the Robert F. Kennedy assassination!