My father left three physical possessions behind him when he departed this Earth: a battered leather jacket, his meticulous notes taken during his induction to the U.S. Navy, and a small stack of yellow newspapers that came out when Robert Kennedy was shot.
I remember finding these newspapers, shoved away at the top shelf of a linen closet & wrapped in a black garbage bag. One front page in particular really struck me, showing a close-up of the face of a dying RFK. A candidate for president, he was supposed to be the “new hope” of a country that seemed to be getting increasingly divided and strange.
Instead, the United States got Nixon. How does that equation go? It’s as old as time. It’s positively archetypal. It’s The Empire Strikes Back.
But that’s a simplistic view, isn’t it? Nixon was massively dysfunctional, but there were a few good things that happened during his presidency—the opening of a dialogue with China and of course the moon landing (carrying the heavy Horus energy from JFK’s initial championing of the space program).
And RFK, for all his crusader-against-injustice qualities—and they were many—likely got his hands dirty by the Marilyn Monroe connection (I don’t think the Kennedys were involved in her death, but I do think there was some after-the-fact damage control/clean-up), but way before that through his poppa Joe’s underworld contacts. One could make the argument that Robert tried to redeem his dad’s more unsavory past activities through his crusades against the mob…in fact, that’s probably largely exactly what happened.
But basically…if we deal with narrative, if we deal with archetypes…this was a battle of light against darkness. Or (maybe better phraseology that doesn’t unfairly penalize this abstract and multi-faceted notion of “darkness”) rather…fuck it, I’m going to say it: good vs. evil.
Because shit got real nasty—and real fucking weird—after RFK died and Nixon took office.
Now, if you do the research into RFK’s assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, a picture emerges of a troubled individual who could barely tie his own shoelaces, much less be the mastermind behind the cutting down of a man who very likely would have been our next president.
In fact, Sirhan Sirhan was a seeker—he was trying hypnosis, Rosicrucianism, etc. in the months before ending up in the kitchen of the Ambassador Hotel with a hot gun in his hand.
If we can say that this gentleman pulled the trigger—if we step aside from the conspiracy theories for a second—can’t we also say that Occam’s razor would indicate that powerful entities wanted RFK dead?
As FBI director J. Edgar Hoover’s deputy Clyde Tolson once remarked about Robert: “I hope that someone shoots and kills the son of a bitch.”
But then I have to go back to that black garbage bag folded and pressed over those old, crumbling newspapers, one of the few things my father decided to preserve from his 42 years on this planet.
Why? Why was RFK important?
Probably because he fucking tried.
Are we re-cycling on this period of time at present? And if we are—and, per the “law” of re-cycles, it’s never *quite* the same each time around—what can we learn from all this?