“The loss of innocence” is a popular meme for the Kennedy assassination…but I think that depends upon your age, ethnicity and sensibilities. Jack was youthful, vital, handsome, moneyed…seemingly all things attractive. Women wanted to be with him; men wanted to be him. And after decades of FDR, Truman and Ike, it was a novelty to have a president who was banging chicks, drinking scotch, sailing on the Cape. His wife was foxy, he was a war hero and had great hair.
You either grieved for your own sense of this tragedy or from your parents somber responses to his death. Since I was by then abstractly aware of Trujillo, the Shah and Medgar Evers, not to mention slavery, segregation, and Native American genocide, I struggle to buy into this “innocence” theme…but I wept right along with everyone else and felt a deep personal sense of loss. If this iconic figure could be so brutally dispatched, how could anyone feel safe?