In the movie JFK, there’s a climactic scene where Kevin Costner shows the absurdity of the idea that Lee Harvey Oswald could have been the lone gunmen who assassinated John F. Kennedy. To just watch that scene, it might seem like a compelling argument. Conspiracy theories about John F. Kennedy have always been prevalent. It’s been suggested that it was the Soviets or that Castro wanted him dead to avenge the Bay of Pigs. Others have said the mafia wanted him dead because of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy’s iron fisted stances on dealing with organized crime. I’ve read that Kennedy knew his health problems would continue to degenerate and he personally staged the assassination as an elaborate suicide to cement his legacy. Others suggest that Lyndon Johnson wanted him dead, that the two men hated each other, and that Johnson would have happily seen Kennedy killed in order to become the president.
It’s important to understand that there has never been any proof to show that the Soviets, Castro, Johnson, or the mob had anything to do with the Kennedy assassination.
At the end of the day, Occam’s Razor needs to prevail. The simplest conclusion is the most reasonable. The conclusion which is making the least assumptions needs to be favored. Such extreme events would have needed to have occurred to have pulled off the various conspiracies and to have successfully kept them secret for a half century. The burden of proof must be on the most plausible explanation which is that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. In interviews, members of Oswald’s own family have said that they don’t raze issues with the belief that Oswald acted alone, because it’s what they believe too!
For television specials, it’s less intriguing to try to show that the assassination was solely perpetrated by Oswald. So they have to feed the monster by having conspiracy theorists try to prove that the angle at which Oswald was shooting would have made the shot impossible (which is false).
The fact that Kennedy’s head jerked back when he was shot does not prove that he was shot from someone in front of him (close analysis of the Zapruder film shows it initially went forward). The problem with the magic bullet scene in the movie JFK is that the actors are sitting on chairs which are the same height, but Kennedy and the governor of Texas were sitting in a front seat and a back seat of a specially designed car and were sitting at different heights which no loner makes the trajectory of the “magic bullet” so magical. Kennedy was perched up higher than John Connelly because people wanted to see the president.
People have pointed to a possible cover-up and talk about flaws with the investigation or a botched autopsy. While there were flaws, the most concrete proof of Kennedy being shot by one person is found in the infamous Zapruder film. Oswald had been in the Marines, was a skilled shooter, and had the ability to make the shot. It used to be suggested that instead of the “magic bullet,” two shots hit Kennedy and Connelly in a time span which would have been impossible for Oswald considering he was firing a bolt-action rifle. But this has been debunked.
The findings of the events surrounding the assassination and autopsy have been investigated and reinvestigated. Reviews of the autopsy still agree that the bullets which hit Kennedy came from behind him. Also, if the assassination had been done by anyone other than U.S. government officials, there would be no logical reason why there would have been a cover up for the Soviets, the Cubans, the mafia, or anyone else.
Yes Oswald said that he was a “just a patsy.” People who murder other people sometimes lie.
There have been times when doctors, or law enforcement who were on duty that day, or other people loosely connected to the events of that day have said that they thought there was more to the story or that there was another shooter. But those people can’t support any evidence against the established belief that Oswald acted alone, and are merely spouting opinions. any people talk about mistakes that were made in the investigation or how the autopsy was mishandled. Both of those things are true. That doesn’t imply a conspiracy however.
For die hard conspiracy theorists, no amount of evidence will ever convince them that what they believe is false. In fact, the more evidence to the contrary of their beliefs will be further solidification of the great lengths that those who were “in on it” were willing to go to cover their tracks.
The idea in some grand conspiracy is certainly more interesting than the thought that Oswald acted alone. For some, I think it’s more comforting to believe that things were happening behind the scenes instead of the reality that someone as inconsequential as lee Harvey Oswald could do something which changed American history and had a colossal impact.
One person can make a difference that can change the world for good.
Unfortunately, one person can also be evil and have an equally significant impact.
For Christmas when I was 7, my dad got a book about the presidents. I was fascinated by it. As someone who’s always loved history, presidential history has always been interesting to me. John F. Kennedy has always been especially interesting. The family is like a soap opera. They have looks, tremendous wealth, power and the unfortunate tragedies which have befallen the Kennedy’s again and again. None more dramatic than a Friday morning in Dallas when John F. Kennedy was executed before a crowd of thousands. November 22, 1963 and November 22, 2013. Two Fridays separated by half a century.