Half a Century later, We remember Dallas as if only yesterday. ( Jay H. Berman)


By, Jay H. Berman – Associate Editor @ronrambles.com


. . . The best possible world may have truly stood within our reach. The initials J.F.K. by many, is remembered most for the inspiration he ignited, as if a call to greatness dwelled within us all. No man filled my heart & mind with hope – as did President John Fitzgerald Kennedy. But for me, the legacy of the late President is embodied in the wonder of, “what might have been.”

The young President delivered to our nation and the world, a vision so true and so strong, his words, all but impossible to ignore:


To state the facts frankly is not to despair the future nor indict the past. The prudent heir takes careful inventory of his legacies and gives a faithful accounting to those whom he owes an obligation of trust.

The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were.

We must use time as a tool, not as a couch. The human mind is our fundamental resource. Our problems are man-made; therefore, they may be solved by man. And man can be as big as he wants. No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings.

John F. Kennedy

Nearly all media outlets, public and private officials, high profile personalities and the citizenry at large, focused on an anniversary of tragedy and sorrow:

50 years ago today the embodiment of strength, sustenance and our spirits – was shockingly taken from us. The vigor and vitality shown to the audience was gone, in a matter of seconds.


Close family friend, advisor and speech writer Ted Sorenson in his biography entitled simply – Kennedy –presents a picture of the man as nearing perfection. Such was the adoration not unusual amongst his inner circle of family, friends and most intimate colleagues.

Renowned author and journalist Seymour Hersch on the other hand, wrote a rather scathing portrayal of JFK, reminding us that Camelot was pure fantasy. The Hersch depiction of President Kennedy may be closer to the truth than that of Sorenson and others. For it is undeniable that he was but human and therefore possessing whatever defects of character we all have.

West wing political advisor Ken O’Donnell presented a picture of JFK flattering in no uncertain terms. His depiction of the Cuban Missile Crisis is the basis for a film made by Kevin Costner. In it, the trio of President Kennedy, brother and the Attorney General Robert Kennedy and O’Donnell saved the world from annihilation. Others, including Kennedy’s Def. Sec. Robert McNamara debunked the O’Donnell/Costner version as inaccurate.But, while the general public realizes that President Kennedy could not have been without certain failings, the vast majority of us remember him as giant amongst men. We lavish tremendous praise upon him as having been one of the greatest of all American presidents.

When asked my opinion of President Kennedy I explain that dismissing analysis of both his administration and the“plot” to end his life, consist of too many unknown variables. For example, there remains disagreement as to the entirety of factors involved in the failed“Bay of Pigs” invasion. Of far more intensity, we don’t know without question the fine details of how the Soviets under Khrushchev were dissuaded from launching nuclear missiles they’d installed in Cuba.

Finally, we come to that unforgettable day in Dallas. Costner and Oliver Stone have their own ideas pertaining to what happened & both created motion pictures depicting their personal viewpoints. Are we to believe them, or the Warren Commission Report, or any of the multitudes of theories, supposed actual knowledge the new media reports themselves of Nov. 22nd. . . And it’s immediate aftermath?

In this observers mind there exists but a singular conclusion which cannot answer any of the questions surrounding his assassination. In my mind – I just do not know.

However, what is clear to me is this – I am filled with deepest sorrow five decades after the event that took his life. President Kennedy’s visions for world peace and for humanity’s greatest achievements still lie ahead.

For me he remains an iconic figure. A man who instilled pride in the American public for our levels of both past victories of life’s struggles, and our everlasting spirit of confidence, brotherhood and hope for a better world. What is our highest purpose? The efforts made to contribute to the facilitation of these goals!

President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, R.I.P. 


  • · The Dallas Morning News
  • · The N.Y. Times
  • · The Boston Globe
  • · The Associated Press
  • · The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, [C.I.A.] redacted declassifiedreports on Vietnam
  • · The Warren Commission Report
  • · “13 Days, by Kevin Costner” (Based upon the statements of Former White House Special Political Advisor Ken O’Donnell).
  • · “Kennedy,” by Ted Sorenson


Jay is on twitter @BermanJ1


He is a freelance author whose works have appeared on the PBS web-site, in Chicken Soup for the Soul and the Editorial page of The Miami Herald.


He previously worked at Time Magazine, The Broward Edition of The Miami Herald and was Editor-In-Chief @ The ptsd-allaince.org


He is currently both an Associate Editor and Feature Political Columnist @http://www.ronrambles.com

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