Whodunnit xvii: truth vs. agenda

That selective quoting (See blog of 8/1) stuck in my craw. Maybe it was because, as an attorney, I was taught that shit is unethical. (I don’t think it’s regarded highly by journalists or historians either.) Anyway, it turned my attention toward truth.
Here’s a minor example. In Salandria’s speech he attacked the media for publishing books which portrayed Kennedy as “a flawed and perverse person…” Salandria did not specify what perversities triggered his inner Falwell, but presumably he meant Kennedy’s sex life and drug use. Personally I think de-mythologizing public leaders is a public service. With JFK, my favorite discovery while doing my research was that, as early as the spring of 1962, he and a mistress were dropping acid. That set me wondering how much it contributed to his turning from Cold War warrior to the we-are-all-one anti-nuker which Salandria and Douglass emphasize in praising his policies.
But I digress. Salandria doesn’t care if the revelations about Kennedy are true. He decries them for being part of the cover-up, a character assassination intended to keep people from caring what happened to him by inferring “he deserved his fate.” (If so, it didn’t work. In a 2011 poll, Americans ranked Kennedy as their fourth greatest president.) Factual truth seems less important to Salandria than how these facts play within his preferred historical narrative. If they don’t advance it, he would, at a minimum, hide them.
He may also distort them. (To be cont.)