Wednesday 21 February 2018

John-Paul McCarthy: JFK's oration fails to stand test of time

Much of President Kennedy's Dail address in 1963 seems now to be un-American, reckons John-Paul McCarthy

John-Paul McCarthy

WHEN Americans think about JFK, they are inexorably drawn to the events in Dallas 50 years ago next Friday.

They remember Clint Hill sprinting from the second car, the futile dash towards Parkland Memorial Hospital, and Dr Malcolm Perry's ashen- faced exchange with the media after "Lancer" was pronounced dead.

We are more inclined here though to think about President Kennedy's address to the Oireachtas that previous summer. And like much else in the Camelot show, this performance has also aged badly. To read the speech today is to feel all over again something of the basically fraudulent element in all major orations.

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