Keller @ Large: Will JFK Assassination Files Release End Conspiracy Theories?

BOSTON (CBS) – Twenty-five years ago, Congress ordered that all the remaining undisclosed files concerning one of the most horrific events in American history be released to the public on October 26, 2017.

And that day has arrived.

If you were old enough to understand what was happening when President John F. Kennedy was murdered on November 22, 1963, you will never forget it.

This wasn’t the first presidential assassination, although it hadn’t happened in more than 60 years. And to have it happen to the youngest elected president ever made it seem especially atrocious.

But since that awful day in 1963, America’s grief has evolved into something nearly as terrible – cynicism and disbelief about the circumstances of Kennedy’s murder. Did Lee Harvey Oswald act alone? Or was this the work of a conspiracy, involving foreign actors, the mafia, our own government? Take your pick.

The most recent national poll shows 61 percent of us believe others were involved in the Kennedy assassination. Only 33 percent believe the official version, that Oswald was the lone gunman. , an increase of more than 20 percent over the past two decades.

Why is that number growing?

Experts suggest the failure of conspiracy theorists to prove their case is one factor. More Americans are better educated now than before, and polls show the better educated you are, the less likely to buy into wild speculation.

Or maybe more and more of us are simply preferring to focus on Kennedy’s life and what it stood for, rather than dwell on his death.

Share your thoughts with me via email at keller@wbztv.com, or use Twitter, @kelleratlarge.

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One Comment

  1. I was entering Spanish class at Syracuse University when the word spread around. We all spent the next 3 days grouped in common rooms watching the TV coverage.

    For many of us this was the first time that the realities of the world of politics affected us directly. We were engaged as we had never been before of since.

    Sitting there watching an listening the consensus was that there was much more to the story; much, much more. And the dribbling of un-sourced information from this “unathorized official” or another really didn’t help the understanding. Jack Ruby’s murder was an astonishing fillip to this tragic story as as the arrest of Oswald in the first place.

    In the period of merely hours, the had identified the shooter, located him a mile away in a movie theater, and had allowed a monumental security breach to allow Ruby to snuff out one of the major “witnesses” to the shooting.

    Things ween’t adding up the way it was explained. And then came the Warren Commission which asked more questions, directly or indirectly, as to what the truth actually.

    I believe Trump’s word that he will release them. Unlike his predecessors, he seems be one that is actually be transparent instead of just talking about it.

    I’m not sure that this release will actually allow us to answer the questions. But, I am pleased that our government, Donald Trump specifically, has chosen transparency over the shuck-and-jive that ee have experienced over the past quarter century.

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