Lessons in the Death of Great Leadership

Imagine; this I believe.

Had John F. Kennedy not been assassinated, our involvement in Vietnam would have ended during his second term.

Had Robert Kennedy not been assassinated there would have been no Watergate scandal.

Had Martin Luther King Jr. not been assassinated, the inner cities would not have turned into the ghettos they became in the 70’s and 80’s, and the riots that occurred after his assassination would never have occurred.

President Eisenhower in a speech three days before leaving office said, among other remarks:

” A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction… This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every statehouse, and every office of the federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together.”

This, I believe, is what killed John Kennedy. The thought of ending a military conflict that had not yet reached its full potential for the makers of all that it takes to make war cost the President his life. (That and his desire to scale back C.I.A and F.B.I. activities was another factor against him by those whose concerns were not the welfare of US citizens but in their own personal wealth and ideology.) There was too much money to be made in war and conducting secret military operations around the globe and operations against citizens in this country.

A Presidency with Robert Kennedy, unencumbered by a war in South Asia, would have enabled the social justice issues lingering since the founding of this nation to be addressed.

A world with Martin Luther King Jr., (and a changed Malcolm X – he was assassinated by the Black Muslims because he had changed his position and did not believe anymore that violence was a way to achieve social justice for blacks) would have lead blacks and other minorities to peacefully transform this nation into one where the American dream is one that could be enjoyed by all.(We are closer now to that ideal, but still fall short in so many ways)

I believe the lessons learned by the deaths of these great men were this: do not put the needs of others above yourself, do not speak of injustice, do not attempt to inspire or raise the hopes of the masses, and MOST importantly do not attempt in ANYWAY to minimize the power-influence-wealth of the elite.

How many potential leaders looked at these lessens and chose life over justice, chose personal security over general welfare, chose silence over speaking for those with no voice. Hundreds, thousands, millions?, we will never know.

Is all of this pure speculation on my part?, that is an arguable point either way, I believe.

Another reality of our not so recent history is voter turn out for elections. Have not reasonable people wondered why there is such low voter turn out? Not everyone eligible to vote is registered and not every registered voter votes. Why? Why is it that people believe their voice doesn’t count? Could it be that they believe that powers beyond them have decided the fate of this nation?

What evidence is there not to believe this is true.

Election of a Black man?, Pfft. Technically he is mixed race. Not the point.

We live in a time where compromise and cooperation are seen as weakness. Where public opinion polls say one thing, but the elected representative say something else. Why?

Ever heard of the expression money talks. Politicians do not get elected to represent anyone; they are elected to support the interests that paid for their campaign

Did you hear recently that the conservative majority on the Supreme Court ruled that corporations are people?

Okay. I am off my soap box

I was encouraged by the traffic on my blog yesterday to continue my thoughts about this country, where we were, what we could have been, but where we are now.

Thank you readers, see you all again tomorrow 😀

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