John Fitzgerald Kennedy


  • Leo Huberman
  • Paul M. Sweezy





As we go to press, the shocking news comes of President Kennedy's assassination. We have been consistently critical of his administration and its policies ever since it took office three years ago, but never on a personal level. The Marxian standpoint, as Marx himself wrote in the Preface to Capital, "can less than any other make the individual responsible for relations whose creature he socially remains." John F. Kennedy was, and had to be, a representative of the class that rules not only the United States but the largest empire in world history. Our criticisms of him have always aimed at that class and the system which sustains it. From this point of view, his assassination can only be looked upon as a senseless, cruel, abhorrent act. It is always shocking when a man in the full prime of life is suddenly cut down: it reminds us all too painfully of the frailty of life, of the perils of chance that threaten each one of us. When the man is President of a great country whose people are tied to him emotionally by a thousand bonds—complex, intertwined, contradictory—the shock and pain and threat are immeasurably intensified. We all died a little with John F. Kennedy, and we all suffer with his family and his personal friends and associates.

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