Who Killed Kennedy?

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Fifth Estate # 56, June 19-July 1, 1968

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Liberation News Service, Washington, D.C.—Lyndon Johnson killed Robert Kennedy sure as you and I are alive. (Sure?) Robert Kennedy killed Lyndon Johnson sure as that man in the big white house is dead. (Sure?)

In America, life is power; power is expensive and physical life is cheap. The survival-of-the-fittest thing continues unabated over millions of years here. It is our national religion.

Lyndon Johnson took away Robert Kennedy’s power in 1963. Robert Kennedy took it back in 1968. Lyndon seemed to cede defeat on March 31, this year. Robert seemed to reciprocate. You might say they were both Indian-givers.

Oh the newspapers and the television pretended concern for his physical life, but the real question is: who gets his power? What will the last will and testament bequeath to his fellows in crime in Washington, D.C.? Who will be our next king? The king is dead—long live the king!

“But there are no kings inside the gates of Eden.”

Lyndon Johnson and Robert Kennedy practiced their art over many years. Lyndon killed Nguyen Van Troi, who had tried to kill Robert MacNamara in Saigon, swearing at his stake, that he had done no crime to his people. Robert killed Andrew Goodman, James Chaney and Michael Schwerner when they were in’ Philadelphia, Mississippi and he the highest law-enforcer in the land. Lyndon became known for his specialty—killing Vietnamese—and Robert is long remembered for his—killing blacks.

“There is so much confusion; I can’t get no relief.”

Robert F. Kennedy was a friend to-the poor; at least the poor thought so. I have seen them cheer and lunge at his golden cuff-links. I have seen Ralph David Abernathy ‘praying’ for his recovery, then praying for his soul. I have heard Jim Bevel, though, say “Remember that JFK guy? He was walkin’ around with hundreds of thousands of dollars in his pocket, and people were starvin’ to death!” But Bevel is, as a Washington Post Columnist said, a “hothead.” Robert Kennedy truly was a friend to the poor.

“And he traveled with a gun in every hand.”

Hubert Humphrey likes to kill Communists of all kinds abroad, and to imprison them at home. This double standard is a reflection that he too deplores violence—at home. He smiles a lot, which shows he has made his peace with his God and can go on to new and higher plains. Just by smiling, he convinces people he is alive, and thus gets more so every day.

Eugene McCarthy looks pretty dour these days; seems to be clinging to life by a thread. He makes even LBJ look alive. Eugene likes to kill Arabs, but then who doesn’t? Even Robert F. Kennedy liked to kill Arabs, although I hadn’t noticed any Arabs lurking around Washington trying to kill him. So who worries about offending the Arab vote already?

Richard Nixon would like to kill a whole lot of people, but nobody ever gives him a chance. He’s a Quaker.

Nelson Rockefeller would like to kill Richard Nixon.

“For threatening my baby, unborn and unnamed: You ain’t worth the blood that runs in your veins.”

Nobody gets excited when a black man gets killed, ’cause they’re dead already. Dick Gregory is a black man who is running for President but if somebody shot him, they’d put it on the Entertainment Page. Dick doesn’t want only to change some people’s lifestyles (he’d make Lyndon secretary of spareribs). But, while Lyndon can poll from Texas tombstones, Dick can’t run from one.

Dick represents the godless, lifeless multitudes. Draft resisters are dead. Poor people are dead. Blacks are dead. Browns are dead. Students are dead only temporarily, unless they get nations. Convicts are dead. All soldiers are dead, unless they get promoted or killed.

I sometimes wonder what would happen if all the dead men got together and united. God knows, they have nothing to lose…

“Strike another match and start anew: ‘Cause it’s all over now, Baby Blue.”

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