57. The John F. Kennedy Assassination


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One of the most significant dates in the history of the United States is November 22, 1963. That is the day President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas while riding in an open-air car. The president was visiting Texas for the first time since his inauguration in January, 1961. Kennedy was one of the most popular presidents in the history of the United States, and still remains so today. His death shocked the nation for several reasons, but mostly because it was televised on a live broadcast. Kennedy was the first president to appear on television at a time when most Americans owned a TV. He was not the first president to be televised, but previous presidents who appeared on TV did not reach the general public because before 1960, not many Americans owned a set.

Kennedy was warned not to ride in an open-air car that day by his bodyguards, but he wanted the public to see him live. He did not want to be hidden behind an armored car. According to the official government commission, Kennedy fell victim to a single assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, but many Americans dispute that finding to this date. Police say Oswald shot the president from a building while Kennedy rode in his car with his wife. The mood was festive at the time as the city of Dallas welcomed the president to Texas. Kennedy was a handsome, young president who was the youngest man ever to reach the presidency.

Oswald later killed a Dallas police officer during his escape from the crime scene, but was soon found hiding in a movie theater. He required police protection from an outraged public, and was held in protective custody. Oswald, who was a former member of the U.S. military, was unhappy with the president for his policies, but never admitted to being the assassin. Conspiracy theories involving rival political parties, the Cuban government, and organized crime have also been advanced as to who actually killed Kennedy.




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