Monday, November 22, 2010

media went social 47 years ago today

On November 22, 1963 there were no cellphones, no Twitter, no Facebook, yet within hours the whole country knew that the president had been shot. If you're a Boomer, you'll never forget where you were when you heard. I learned it from my arithmetic teacher, a nun. I'd never seen a nun cry before. Schools closed early. Office workers streamed home. The next day was declared a national day of mourning. The country stayed riveted to screens and because there was only three channels, we all took in pretty much the same thing. Almost as shocking as the event itself was the fact that Walter Cronkite broke down while reporting it. (around 5:25 in the tape.) Two days later, we were traumatized en masse again when Lee Harvey Oswald was himself shot dead on live television.

1 comment:

California Girl said...

Well put. None of us old enough will forget. I was in 7th grade History; the school announced it over the PA system. The repitition of images was endless. That was the first time I recall replays of that nature. Then came Viet Nam.

I wondered to my husband this morning if the JFK assasination, et. al., will be front and center after those of us alive at the time are gone? I mean, we don't commemorate Lincoln, etc. It's a curious sad note.