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rue-madame's Diaryland Diary

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The politics of nothing

Last night as I was flipping channels waiting for The OC to start, I paused on the PBS station to watch Jackie Kennedy alight in Dallas in 1963. I wasnít even alive then, but itís hard for me not to get choked up at footage of JFK and the first lady. They had just gotten off the plane, and were standing on the tarmack, looking optimistic but also tired.

After a bit, the program showed journalists interviewing bystanders who had witnessed the assassination. They were all totally freaked out. Finally, they aired an early interview with Zapruder. His film had not been developed yet, and they were talking while it was being processed. Zapruder was all choked up.

The inevitable happened next.

I saw for the very first time in my life the original 26 seconds of color footage of JFK getting shot. Terence completely covered his eyes because he didnít want to see. I kept mine open and recoiled further and further into my seat as each agonizing second ticked by.

I nearly vomited from the horror. And switched to Fox. A different type of horror.

ďI canít believe I just saw the actual footage of JFK getting shot. In color. Iíve only ever seen black + white stills.Ē I said to Terence.

ďI have never seen the film, and I donít plan to.Ē said Terence.

Terenceís parents (and mine, too, actually) are Kennedy Democrats. I donít know what this means to other people, but my interpretation is ďDemocrats who were hopeful about the future of this country until JFK was assassinated by a right-wing plot.Ē There have been some candidates who made our parents believe in the possibility of a progressive American government (McGovern, Stevenson,) but those people never won. And to this day, our parents remain skeptical and suspect of all politicians. And they no longer vote Ďfor,í they vote Ďagainst.í

As important as it is to vote for someone who has great ideas and speaks eloquently, personally Iíd like a little more style in the white house. I know itís superficial, but if I have to see any more footage of the Bushes in their ill-fitting khakis, or the Clintons with their poofy hair, or the doddering Reagans in their cowboy duds, Iím going to scream.

6:13 p.m. - 2003-11-20

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