Friday, 29 March 2013 23:28

Open Letter to Rachel Maddow re Show on Gun Control

Written by

In reaction to her appeal to the Warren Commission's lone gunman conclusions in order to promote gun control legislation.

March 29, 2013

Dear Rachel:

Many of us, including me, have admired much of your work on radio and television since 2004, when you were perhaps the very best show on Air America. We then followed you as you became a regular guest on MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann’s show and CNN’s Paula Zahn show. Therefore, we were glad when Keith pushed for you to have your own show on MSNBC. You deserved it. You were a great advocate for progressive causes and puncturing MSM shibboleths and sacred cows.

Which makes it disturbing that you would do what you did on your March 13th program. A common joke among the vast majority who understand the truth about President Kennedy’s assassination is this:

“You know 85% of the public doesn’t buy the Warren Commission hogwash about Lee Oswald being the lone assassin of President Kennedy. Unfortunately, the 15% who do all work at the New York Times, Washington Post, LA Times, NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox.” Should we add now, MSNBC?

Everyone knows that Chris Mathews made his career by attacking Oliver Stone’s films JFK and Nixon. And he spares no opportunity to say that he believes the Oswald myth and to knock anyone who does not. (But he wisely has no one on his show to present the other side as he does so.) We also know that Bill O’Reilly got his position at Fox by agreeing with Roger Ailes that he would drop his JFK investigatory reports he had done for Inside Edition. (Which were actually pretty good.) He now literally lies about the case in his book Killing Kennedy and on his show.

Most of us thought that we would never see you do something like that. But yet you did use the whole Warren Commission lie about Oswald to promote gun control on March 13th. Many of us agree with the gun control cause especially after Sandy Hook and Aurora. But we would never promote something as bad as the Warren Commission to promote a common good. Especially when it’s not at all necessary.

We all understand that there is an unwritten agreement when you make it big on TV that you cannot touch things like the JFK case. In other words you can have an open debate with anyone, no matter how far out about anything under the sun. But not the JFK assassination. Fine. Maybe you are uninformed about the facts. Maybe you like your newfound fame and fortune. That is all understandable. But is there an unwritten clause in your contract that you have to go out of your way to promote a lie as big as the Warren Commission? I doubt it.

As you mentioned on your ill-advised show, this is the fiftieth anniversary of President Kennedy’s death. He was probably the last real Democrat to occupy that office. And he actually proclaimed he was a liberal. A word the right has successfully stamped out of the political lexicon, along with the word conspiracy. If you do visit this topic again later on, let it be in the spirit of free and open inquiry. Tell your bosses that is what you are really about—all the time, on any subject. There are many people who are articulate and convincing about how bad the Commission really was and what happened to this country afterwards. And the thing is, many people want to hear this side of the story: 85% of us.


Jim DiEugenio, CTKA


Last modified on Wednesday, 29 August 2018 12:39
James DiEugenio

One of the most respected researchers and writers on the political assassinations of the 1960s, Jim DiEugenio is the author of two books, Destiny Betrayed (1992/2012) and The JFK Assassination: The Evidence Today (2018), co-author of The Assassinations, and co-edited Probe Magazine (1993-2000).   See "About Us" for a fuller bio.

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