Friday, July 18, 2008

Remembering Chappaquiddick

On this date in 1969, Mary Jo Kopechne died a slow, horrible death, trapped underwater in a car driven by Senator Edward Moore Kennedy, commonly known as 'Ted'.

Rather than summon aid and inform the police, as he was legally obliged to do, the Scoundrel Senator from Massachusetts went home and fell asleep. Indications are that Ms. Kopechne may have lived for as long as an hour or more, trapped in a pocket of air in the car - while her erstwhile 'friend' abandoned her to her fate.

For the life of me, I can't understand how the people of Massachusetts continued to elect this man as their Senator for the next few decades. His guilt was so clear, the cover-up so obvious, that the whole situation stank to high heaven. I suppose it says a great deal about the people of Massachusetts that they continued to vote for him - although I wouldn't want anyone saying that sort of thing about me!

Kennedy is now gravely ill. It's rumored that he may die soon. That may be so . . . but Mary Jo Kopechne, who would have lived but for his pusillanimity and self-centeredness, has been dead for thirty-nine years. Kennedy's had all that time to continue his misbegotten ways.

One hopes he'll soon have the opportunity to explain to her why he left her to die like that - and that justice for Mary Jo, denied here on earth, may at last be served in a somewhat higher forum.



Brigid said...

Another instance in which the machinery of justice was smashed beneath the power and prestige of the Kennedy family. The evidence was there. It's still there. George Killen, chief of a never-revealed investigation, said Kennedy, "killed that girl the same as if he put a gun to her head and pulled the trigger."

Some people have commented elsewhere that it's time to forget or to forgive, he's old, he's ill. By continuing with a public life after this event- forgiving and forgetting does not apply. We should expect our elected officials to be ethical and law abiding. Hopefully a decent human being as well. Ted's actions at the time and after the event gave clear indication to the public of what his character was. Yet that public still continued to elect him. That's the sorriest part of it all.

Decent, law abiding and ethical. Almost four decades later Kennedy is still down zero to three.

Peter (NOGH) said...

I was a 12 year-old boy when that happened, living in Framingham (about 16 miles outside of Boston in Middlesex County).
I remember clearly his 'explanation' on the telly, complete with the cuff around his neck.
I had already been reading Clemens (Mark Twain) and knew that politicians lied as a matter of course, but this was different. This was Jack and Bobby's little brother that was spewing BS, and I knew it to be BS, even though I was as yet too young to know what 'BS' meant literally.

It was the day that I lost my 'virginity', ie, my trust in Government.

Thanks for nothing, Teddy.

Billll said...

We honor her sacrifice, unwilling though it was, without which Teddy might well have become president.

Rogue Medic said...

Brigid said...

"Decent, law abiding and ethical. Almost four decades later Kennedy is still down zero to three."

Not to excuse him, but he is a politician. When have we expected politicians to do any of the three?

Billll said...

It's called moral turpitude.
It appears to be a selling point in Massachusetts.

Anonymous said...

The people of Massachusetts bear just as much of the blame as Mary Joe. They elected him, and continued to do so long after he killed her. Teddy may very soon get his "day in court" when he has to stand in judgement on why he let the young girl die.