Saturday Night Card Game
There has been a not too subtle attempt this week to smear the Tea Party as racist and violent in connection with the 50th Anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
What does the Tea Party have to do with the assassination?
It’s an outgrowth of the discredited and time-worn eliminationist narrative, that the modern “right wing” and the Tea Party in particular are the inheritors of the “paranoid style of politics” from the 1960s.
The logic, if you call it that, is that Dallas was a city infused with hate and anti-Catholic bigotry, that bigotry was reflective of a larger Southern bigotry including racism, and that the Tea Party is the outgrowth of that racist, bigoted past which led to the assassination.
- The New York Times, The City With a Death Wish in Its Eye
- The Washington Post, Tea party has roots in the Dallas of 1963
- The Washingtonian, “The city of hate had, in fact, killed the President
- Slate, In A Prophetic Letter, A Dallas Citizen Begged JFK Not To Visit
There is a problem with all this, of course. Kennedy was killed by a Lee Harvey Oswald, a Commie, not the “right wing.”
Let me repeat, because this is the internet:
JACK KENNEDY WAS KILLED BY A COMMIE!!!
You would not know that if you read the attempt to portray the Kennedy assassination as the result of right wing, bigoted hatred in the mainstream liberal media and blogosphere:
Rich Lowry notes (also see video at bottom of post), The Kennedy Conspiracy in Plain Sight:
As James Piereson writes in his brilliant book Camelot and the Cultural Revolution, liberals had the choice after the assassination to make Kennedy a martyr to civil rights or admit that he was a casualty of the Cold War. They found the notion of Kennedy dying for racial progress much more congenial and useful, even though it depended on a rank distortion.
The interpretive misdirection began in the immediate aftermath of Lee Harvey Oswald’s act of murder. Pundits and analysts still follow the well-worn script, often boiling down their indictment to one word: Dallas….
Slate calls a letter to Kennedy’s press secretary warning JFK not to visit Dallas because he might be killed by a right-wing mob “eerily prophetic,” which would be unassailably true . . . if Kennedy had been killed by a right-wing mob….
Look, guys. Lee Harvey Oswald murdered JFK. Oswald was a Communist. Not a small c, “all we are saying is give peace a chance and let’s support Negro civil rights” kind of Communist, but someone so committed to the cause (and so blind to the nature of the USSR) that he actually went to live in the Soviet Union. And when that didn’t work out, Oswald became a great admirer of Castro. He apparently would have gone to live in Cuba before the assassination if the Cubans would have had him. Before assassinating Kennedy, Oswald tried to kill a retired right-wing general. As near as we can tell, he targeted Kennedy in revenge for Kennedy’s anti-Castro actions.
The attempt to at best distract us from who the killer was and why he killed JFK, and at worst to pin the blame on entirely innocent people for inciting Dallas opinion against JFK (or perhaps to imply that the right-wingers plotted the assassination), even though those innocents were exactly the type of people Oswald hated, is just pathetic, and the Times and Post should be embarrassed for publishing these pieces. The Post piece is especially embarrassing because it explicitly links Dallas “right-wing extremism” circa 1963 to the modern “Tea Party,” as if to say, “if the Tea Party had been around in 1963, one of its members would have killed Kennedy.”
My only real disagreement with Prof. Bernstein is that he only put Communist in bold, not in H2 font size, so let me help him out:
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