I Remember the Day John F. Kennedy Was Assassinated – Part 9

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Having experienced the upheaval of President Reagan just being shot but, thank God, surviving, and JFK being shot and killed, I find it unnerving, to say the least that a young woman at the University of Texas, President of the Young Republicans on that campus, sent the following Twitter message several months ago as reported on ABC News:

At 2:29 pm ET, UT’s Lauren E. Pierce wrote: “Y’all as tempting as it may be, don’t shoot Obama. We need him to go down in history as the WORST president we’ve EVER had! #2012.” (16 November 2011)

Pierce, the president of the College Republicans at UT Austin, told ABC News the comment was a “joke” and that the “whole [shooting incident] was stupid.” Giggling, she said that an attempted assassination would “only make the situation worse.”

Perhaps I’m just old fashioned but “giggling” over such a comment? Giggling in an interview with a national media outlet after you have tweeted something like that? Such behavior is reprehensible from an American eighteen or over which makes her a full-fledged citizen of the United States.

“Insofar as she’s a representative [of the College Republicans], maybe it shouldn’t be said, but she’s made a positive statement in a way, ” said Cassie Wright, the group’s vice president.

“I don’t really see anything wrong with it,” Wright added. “It’s just a personal comment, not representative of any group. Just freedom of speech, you know?”

Having lived through the history I have lived through, I cannot think of a more irresponsible and dangerous comment to make, even as a joke. There is nothing funny about it. I am shocked that Ms. Wright sees no harm in making such a statement.

It was “just freedom of speech, you know?” Actually, Ms Wright, I don’t think so. In fact, it isn’t “just freedom of speech, you know,” since it is illegal to threaten the life of the President of the United States even in a joking way. I don’t know if the US Secret Service interviewed you and asked what your motivations were but there is no excuse for these comments and you and Ms. Pierce might want to give some extended thought to the repercussions of what happens when a President is shot. I can only hope that it never, ever happens again in my lifetime.

[Source: ABC News]

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: http://charlesmccain.com/

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