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How Mad Men React to the Death of JFK

July 22, 2010

I’ve been watching a lot of “Mad Men” lately. It is, without a doubt, the best show on television. The writing is perhaps the best thing I’ve ever seen. The acting is amazing.  The cinematography is great. I have to watch all of season 3 on On Demand by Sunday the 25th because new episodes come back on again and I want to finish the past season first. So yeah, there’s my plug, go watch. You won’t be dissapointed.

Betty Draper (my future wife) and Don Draper (I'm straight, if I wrote anything here people would assume otherwise)

I’m watching season 3 episode 12 as I sit here. It’s not really a spoiler, but in this episode someone shoots JFK and everyone is reacting. Lots of crying. People not going to social functions, ignoring work, losing their faith in humanity, etc. It’s really strange to me. I don’t think that would happen now. It seems like in just 40  or 50 years we’ve changed a lot as a nation. Maybe I’m just reacting like a Don Draper would, but I don’t think it would be as big of a deal now as it was back then.

I’m going to not use Obama as my example to show I’m not being stupid and partisan (which I normally am). Let’s just pretend that we’re talking about our next president. A perfect conservative. Some commie gets ahold of a Remington 700 and,  three years into his presidency, gets shot while giving some big outside national speech. Here’s what would happen.

Shock by everyone for maybe two days. People won’t be happy, very few people will actually be emotional. People will turn on their TV’s and follow the story on their internet at work. I’ll throw up a post or two about how bad this is, I’ll throw out some blame as well. You know, one of my angry rants that make me look crazy. I try not to do them too often, sometimes I can’t help it. After the initial wave of shock it’ll be replaced by partisan shock. Conservatives will be more upset, understandably. Democrats will be respectful but moving onto the implications of what this means for the country and their party. Conservatives will soon follow. And then we’ll get right back into nothing but politics; what happens now, what the impact of this is on the bigger picture, etc. The spotlight will then shift to the Vice President and how he handles everything. After a month the President’s name will be referred to as a memory conservatives can call on to execute political maneuvers.

Are we so angry and scared of politics as a nation that we can’t even really care about an assassination? I’m not saying that as a country we wouldn’t be upset, I know we would be, but I don’t think it’s possible for us to care as much as we did back with JFK. And you know what? I don’t think that that’s a bad thing. When you love something that much it’s hard to see the inherent flaws. Governments are nothing but a consolidation of flaw in the name of societal justice, whatever that may be. As a country we have attempted to make the transition from unconditional love of our government to unconditional mistrust, and that’s alright with the libertarian in me. (And by that I mean I know this awesome guy named Tyler Durden and he’s really into the whole Tea Party thing (If you don’t get that reference don’t Google it, spoiler alert)).

I’m rambling. I’m not even going to try to go back and try to make sense of what I just wrote. Good luck. I have one last episode of “Mad Men” to watch this season, I don’t have time for you people. And yes, I meant that in the most racist way possible.

One Comment leave one →
  1. PeteCampbell permalink
    July 22, 2010 6:29 pm

    I think you are totally wrong (Shock I know)

    I think if Obama or Bush before him had been assasinated America would have flipped a hit and started one war, minimum (if it were an American who did the deed we would probably invade his/her home state…or maybe Canada).

    Think about America’s reaction after 9/11. The flags would come out, the word “tragedy” would be everywhere.

    Heres what I do agree with you about, we would not have the Civil Rights Act of 1964 today. Even the death of the President would not bring togather the parties today.

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