Essay: Lee Harvey Oswald

Lee Harvey Oswald is regarded as the person who assassinated one of our most beloved

president. Oswald in New Orleans, Louisiana was born. Oswald would serve in the United States

Marine Corps. He would later after discharge from the military defect to the Soviet Union where he

would try to renounce his American Citizenship and because he was refused did return to the United

States with a wife Marina and two daughters June and Rachel. Oswald would then obtain firearms and

plot an event so heinous that its effects were so profound that not one person in the United States at the

time cannot still to this day tell you exactly where they were at the time of the event.

The Event took place in Dallas, Texas and is regarded as the birthplace of where America lost

its innocence and is considered the pivotal point in which the nation realized we were no longer

immune from evil people. President John F Kennedy, Jacqueline Onassis Kennedy and Governor John

B. Connally were riding through Dallas Texas in the presidential motorcade when a shot rang out from

the sixth floor of the book repository which was fired by Lee Harvey Oswald. Governor Connally

would survive his wounds while President Kennedy would be pronounced dead at Parkland Hospital in

Dallas texas, He was 46.

Oswald would be apprehended and arrested after the first person to find him following the

assassination; Police officer J.D. Tippet was believed to be shot and consequently killed by Oswald.

He would later be arrested at a movie theater in Oak Cliff Texas after a massive manhunt ensued.

Oswald would be remanded to police custody where he would be arraigned and questioned over the

time period of two days. He would later be shot and killed on live television during his police

transport by Jack Ruby who was a nightclub owner in Dallas Texas who decided he would be judge,

jury and executioner.

The media played a large role in the portrayal of Oswald, Ruby, and other people involved in

not only the events after the assassination of the president but with the airing of the assassination of

Oswald himself. The media was a fairly new form of media that because of the assassination of the

president and the love americans felt for him was not only birthed but the major source of information

for most americans not living in Dallas Texas. The new president Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) was

sworn in beside Jacqueline Kennedy, as well as the receiving of the president’s casket was shown in the


The day of the Assassination was a turning point for media. Walter Cronkite announced the

death of JFK and the media ran with the information. Americans began to tune in to the news as a

source of strength and information in the dark days that followed. America was no longer innocent

and the news helped to facilitate that ideal. Walter Cronkite was tuned into on television by Americans

and CBS was one of the first networks to carry what would be equal today to Fox News Channel or

CNN network. If information was disseminated of the assassinations then this is where most

americans would find information. CBS would air Walter Cronkite crying and announcing that

President Kennedy has died, (Cronkite, 1963).

According to the biological theory of crime, Oswald fit this theory well. It was widely viewed

that Oswald, who that because of a defect of the mind, shot and killed the president. He was seen by

Americans as the evil stranger who was considered to be psychotic. He was relatively unknown by

most Americans and his assassination to this day raises questions and conspiracy theories of his lone

actions (surette, 2011; Time, 1991). Oswald under this theory of crime was not only seen as a

psychopath that killed the president but it was widely viewed that Oswald suffered from something

wrong in his mind that caused him to do the unthinkable and that his problem was his and his alone

and not due to society and its failures.

One of the Frames in media coverage was a blocked opportunity frame. Those who would

write about Oswald would later recount that because of his ill education, wanting to leave the country,

dismissal from the military and coupled with his defection and the refusal of the Soviet Union to make

him a citizen, his inability to maintain substantial employment that he killed Kennedy as a result of

this all that was wrong with his life. The media added to this view of Oswald’s actions. The Warren

Commission would later recount that Oswald was the product of blocked opportunities in their report

and that because of events in his life he assassinated Kennedy as direct result (Surette, 2011).

The claims makers included the general public, people were in shock that president Kennedy

was assassinated and wanted viable answers as to how and why this happened. Walter Cronkite did his

level best to make sure that America knew what and why this terrible event happened which was clear

the night of his broadcast of the killing of JFK (Cronkite, 1963). Other claims-makers included LBJ

who established the Warren commission to resolve the questions of the assassination. In the Warren

Report it was established that not only did Oswald kill kennedy but he acted alone. However,

conspiracy theorists will point out that a shot came from the grassy knoll in Dallas and the the only

recording of the assassination of Kennedy was a film by Zapruder and made public which some

pruport shows the shot that hit Kennedy in the head and Jacqueline Kennedy covering the body of her

husband and Governor Connally suffering wounds. (Tapper, J; Press, 1964).

The consequences of the claims-makers of the general public, LBJ, The Warren Commission,

The news media and others such as Fidel Castro has lead to the establishment of conspiracies. These

conspiracies are still to this day debated on television and in books currently in print. Oliver Stone a

famous producer, Jake Tapper a news blogger and even the news today still buy into these theories of

Conspiracy that Oswald had not acted alone. That there had to be another person and because of the

significance of the event still today has people questioning the Warren report, theories presented

falsely in the Zapruder film and even the media today on the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of

John Fitzgerald Kennedy contribute to the unrest of the event(Tapper, 2013; Time, 1991).

Social construction of this event has led to actions taken to keep our president being kept safer.

We no longer allow the president to ride in an open motorcade. The secret service has taken absolute

measures to change the motorcade to a safer environment for the president. Because of the

Assassination the president is now not only safer but restricted in his movements when appearing in

public by the Secret Service. (Time, 1991). The consequences of the assassination has not only

influenced public opinion but also contributed and facilitated and promulgated theories of more than

one shooter in the JFK assassination.

The media has and will always be used to suggest reasons as to why crimes happen. The media

itself is responsible for questioning everything and on this fiftieth anniversary of the assassination;

consequently because of the instant nature of media, conspiracy theorists are once again making

themselves heard. News media such as CNN, Newspapers and Bloggers are making their opinions

about the theory of the second shooter heard. This gives ordinary americans a reason to doubt the

Warren Commission Report and establish other theories such as the route of the motorcade was

changed, Fidel Castro killed JFK and other bogus theories. This is due to the fact that maybe

Americans cannot wrap their mind around the fact that not only did Oswald kill Kennedy and a police

officer, but he did in fact act alone.

In conclusion the assassination of John F Kennedy was not only traumatic for America as a

whole, but it ushered in the beginning of a turbulent time in America. The assassination came on the

heels of the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis and forced americans to look for an answer that

would not be found then but is not found now. People are reluctant to accept the facts of the events to

the point where refusal to believe the Warren Commissions report and what the findings present.

Because of this refusal the general feeling of the assassination is that of unfinished business and we

must find a reason why instead of accepting the factual record there has to be another reason. The facts

are: Oswald climbed the stairs of the repository, shot the president and left. He then killed a police

officer when confronted in the street not far from the repository and that Jack Ruby assassinated

Oswald for no other reason than to be judge and executioner (Associated press, 1964).

Associated Press (1964). The Warren Commission Report: Report of the President’s

Commission on the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Retrieved October 22, 2013.

Cronkite, W (1963). JFK assassination: Cronkite informs a shocked nation. Retrieved October 22, 2013.

Surette, Ray. (2011). Media, Crime and Criminal Justice (4th ed.). Belmont, CA.: Wads worth.

Tapper, J (2013). Who killed JFK?. Retrieved November, 25, 2013.

Time Magazine (1991). So, you want to know, who killed the President and connived in the cover-up? Everybody! High officials in the CIA, the FBI, the Dallas constabulary, all three armed services, Big Business and the White House. Everybody done it ‘ everybody but Lee Harvey Oswald. Time Magazine, Dec. 23, 1991. Retrieved November 5, 2013.

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