‘Where were you’ query seemed funny, then tragic
The disheveled man carried a cardboard sign that read “Where were you when JFK got shot?”
We were queued on 4th Street near Chestnut in Philadelphia, early arrivals who would stand for about 12 hours for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s final political rally, a kind of last stand to arouse Keystone State supporters with President Barack Obama, wife, Michelle, along with Bill Clinton and daughter, Chelsea.
The event attracted 30,000 people at Independence Mall, the birthplace of these United States.
Back to the guy with the JFK inquisitor.
We laughed about his question which seemed weirdly disconnected considering that Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated President Kennedy nearly 50 years in the past.
But then came Tuesday night that crawled into Wednesday morning as tables and tides turned with an unexpected victory for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, a defeat of odds-on-favorite Democrat Hillary Clinton.
This plot had almost the same significance as one’s whereabouts for Jack Kennedy’s death date.
Infamy has a way of catching us off guard as expected outcomes turn into Pearl Harbor or September 11.
We monitor our social territory in time frames and GPS pinpoints.
September 8 that slowdragged into September 9 delivered a political D-Day as Trump attacked the U.S. government and won with a detailed dizzying dismantling of an alleged Clinton Great Lakes firewall that claimed him Wisconsin and Michigan as trophy pieces.
Those breached checkpoints along with key victories in Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania produced the Trump political rampage.
The year 2016, already stark and big-staged with Major League Baseball’s Chicago Cubs connected to the card-boarded question after the Cubbies won the World Series, ending a 107-year-old jinx, now dealt a political equalizer.
Where were you when Donald Trump beat the pants suit off Hillary Clinton?
Many U.S. residents were around for both Kennedy and Trump.
While the Kennedy assassination produced national and international sorrow, the Trump outcome delivered joy for just about half of U.S. voters as Republicans celebrated a shocking victory.
For Democrats, the Trump triumph or Clinton loss, came two weeks before the 53rd anniversary of Kennedy.
We are left with the same question: “Is this really happening?”
A presidential candidate who never showed his tax returns, who made misogyny a household word and acceptable practice, accused of groping women before he gained a seat in the Oval Office, who ridiculed a disabled man and promised a roundup of Muslims and deportation of Spanish-speaking undocumented residents then construction of a wall that reached into Heaven, became president-elect.
The man who used stardom as allowances for p**sy grabs, now has his hands on the brass ring as world’s most powerful human being.
Singer/songwriter Don McLean penned his famous “(Bye, Bye, Miss) American Pie” smash hit after Kennedy passed away.
Depending on perspective, the 2016 election means different conclusions for voters.
Democracy either dies or flourishes, hope either fleets or gains strongholds, and America will be great again or this represents the beginning of the end.
Perhaps, in fifty years some guy holding a cardboard sign will roam a U.S. street and ask about this moment in time as memories of Kennedy seem as distant as Honest Abe.
Personally, truthfully, Tuesday represented trouble ahead.
“And them good ol’ boys were drinking whiskey and rye, singin’ this’ll be the day that I die.”
President-elect Donald Trump pumps his fist during an election night rally in New York.