Posts Tagged ‘Presidents’

I’m old enough to (barely) remember Dwight Eisenhowever as President. But I was paying attention during the 1960 Presidential campaign. I don’t recall having a strong preference between John Kennedy and Richard Nixon initially.

I became sympathetic towards JFK after he gave a speech about his Catholic faith in September 1960 in Houston, TX. It seemed unfair then, and now, that he was forced to defend his religion and his participation in it.

Photowannabe’s high school band played and marched down Pennsylvania Avenue for President Kennedy’s Inauguration Parade.

I liked the Kennedys in the White House. They had a couple children, Caroline, a little older than my baby sister, and the baby, John, Jr., who was born just after the election.

I wasn’t paying attention to the disastrous Bay of Pigs incursion in Cuba in April 1961. But all of us were aware of the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962, because we had the vague feeling that because of…WHATEVER was happening, we could end up at war, perhaps in the United States.

The cliche that there was a picture of JFK, MLK Jr and Jesus in every black home was an exaggeration, but I surely saw the phenomenon many times. In terms of the 35th president, it seemed more for his POTENTIAL for aiding the civil rights movement, which, by the last year of his life, I was paying a lot of attention to.

Here’s a factoid: “After a meeting with the National Council of Senior Citizens, President John F. Kennedy encouraged all Americans to pay tribute to older people across the country by designating May 1963 as Senior Citizens Month. Every president since has issued a formal proclamation during or before the month of May in support of older Americans.”

I do recall, with some detail, the death of Patrick Kennedy in August 1963, at less than two days old. This made me incredibly sad.

Of course, the shooting in Dallas was etched in the minds of everyone above a certain age. Some months later, the Warren Report on the assassination was released, with excerpts appearing in the local newspaper. I cut out those pages and taped them on paper which I then put in a three-ring binder. I still have that binder in the attic somewhere.

It was only later I thought, it wasn’t even supposed to be John that his father would groom to be President, it was supposed to be Joe, Jr. But he died in the war,the same one that almost took Jack’s life as well.

Of course, there are a bunch of centennial stories out there, from the Kennedy Center and Celebrate JFK at 100 by walking in his footsteps, e.g. Or Inside the Scandalous Life of JFK’s Sister, Kick Kennedy.

Jackie was right: Camelot was over on 11/22/1963. I didn’t know what that meant at the time, but surely I felt it, that loss of innocence and possibility. Lyndon Johnson undoubtedly achieved more for civil rights, using the slain leader as a prod for Congress to take the right action. But things would never be the same.

I collected as many Kennedy 50-cent pieces as I could, which were – alas- stolen, because I wanted to, quite literally, hold onto that time as long as I could.


George Washington’s first inaugural address (April 1789), referring to himself: “One, who, inheriting inferior endowments from nature and unpractised in the duties of civil administration, ought to be peculiarly conscious of his own deficiencies.”

Now I Know: The Case of George Washington versus Pinocchio

John Quincy Adams: When The People Cheered

Presidents in Our Backyard – Part 1 (Martin Van Buren, Chester A. Arthur, Ulysses S. Grant)

The highest-ranked President who only served one-term is James Knox Polk.

Sarah Knox Taylor, the second daughter of Zachary Taylor and the first Mrs. Jefferson Davis

This is an actual standard fantasy I’ve had over the years Read the rest of this entry »

bornintheusa-obama
Arthur’s FIRST question to me for this round, about Barack Obama, I took some time answering:

BoyOhBoyOhBoy, have I been waiting for THIS! You asked me a LOT of awesome questions, – I DID! but one I thought of for you keeps popping into my head, and it’s heavy:

About a year ago (and probably early this year), many political commentators were saying that President Obama would be regarded as “one of the most consequential presidents in US history”. Given that the Orange Guy and his Republican Congress are poised to undo everything President Obama accomplished over the past 8 years (and pretty much every good thing done by all presidents, Republican and Democratic, over the past several decades…), do you think the pundits’ assessment is now laughable? Or, will it be that Obama’s image will soar Read the rest of this entry »

Analytical Grammar: Homophone graffitil

Analytical Grammar: Homophone graffiti


Why many Americans don’t see Donald Trump as racist

So You Want to Wear a Safety Pin

1st woman elected to Congress, in 1916

John Oliver: School Segregation and Multilevel Marketing

6 Million Lost Voters: State-Level Estimates of Felony Disenfranchisement, 2016

Do You Understand the Electoral College?
Read the rest of this entry »

electoral_mapAs you’ve might have heard, the American voter will be electing the 45th President of the United States on November 8. Well, sort of.

Most of the states, 48 of them (except for Nebraska and Maine), are winner-take-all contests, where one candidate or another gets all of what are called electoral votes, which Parade magazine attempts to explain, as does the Wikipedia.

Basically, the number of members of the House of Representatives (based on population) plus the number of US Senators (2 per state) equals the number of electoral votes a state gets. The District of Columbia, where the nation’s capital, Washington, is (as opposed to the western state of Washington), also gets three electoral votes.

The candidate with more than 270 electoral votes (538 total electoral votes divided by two, plus one) becomes President. Getting on the ballot on each state is fairly routine for the Democratic Party (candidate is Hillary Clinton) and the Republican Party (Donald Trump). Only one other candidate is on the ballot in all 50 states, the Libertarian Party candidate, Gary Johnson. Jill Stein of the Green Party is running in over 40 states. Here’s a list of other minor party candidates.

The winner in November will be either the Democrat or the Republican. Not since 1860, when Abraham Lincoln won, running on the nascent Republican party, won the election. The Progressive Party ran former President Teddy Roosevelt against the Republican incumbent (and former TR Vice-President) William Howard Taft. Teddy came in second, and received 88 of 531 electoral votes. But Democrat Woodrow Wilson was elected.

1968 was the most recent time at third party candidate won electoral votes, George Wallace of the American Independent Party, who garnered 46 of 538 electoral votes. “The last third party candidate to win more than 5.0% of the vote was Ross Perot, who ran as an independent and as the standard-bearer of the Reform Party in 1992 and 1996, respectively.” Read more about third parties here.
votingec
[Blue is Democratic; red is Republican.]

Each state has its own rules about voting. The deadlines for registering to vote vary. Some allow early voting, before November 8, while others do not. The hours the polls are open are not the same. This is is the nature of federalism, which allows the states to maintain control of certain aspects of the process.

I will be voting in the election for our 45th President. I ALWAYS vote.

That’s enough for now – I worked on this piece before and it died when my computer whacked out – but if you have questions about the process, this old poli sci major will try to answer your questions.

abcw19klein

ABC Wednesday – Round 19

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