John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, was assassinated at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time on Friday, November 22, 1963, in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas. Every American remembers where they were when the news came of his shooting and death. I was in class at Washington University, in St. Louis when the word came of his assassination. The class was dismissed and all students sent home.
One thing never reported was that JFK was a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association. On March 20, 1961 JFK became a life member and in a letter to the NRA President Franklin L. Orth stated, “Through competitive matches and sports in coordination with the National Board for Promotion of Rifle Practice, the Association fills an important role in our national defense effort, and fosters in an active and meaningful fashion the spirit of the Minutemen.”
Mike Fuljenz from Newsmax writes:
“John F. Kennedy supported Second Amendment rights for Americans, saying in an April 1960 statement, “By calling attention to a well-regulated militia, the security of the nation and the right of each citizen to keep and bear arms, our founding forefathers recognized the essentially civilian nature of our economy. Although it is extremely unlikely that the fears of government tyranny, which gave rise to the Second Amendment, will ever be a major danger to our nation, the Amendment still remains a major declaration of our basic civilian-military relationships, in which every citizen must be ready to participate in the defense of his country. For that reason, I believe the Second Amendment will always be important.”
Kennedy was one of eight U.S. presidents to become a Life Member of the National Rifle Association, guardian of Americans’ Second Amendment rights. In this distinction, JFK was the lone Democrat in the company of Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, all of whom became lifetime NRA members (although Nixon disavowed his membership in 1969 and Bush resigned in 1995).
In his March 20, 1961, letter to NRA Executive Vice President Franklin Orth accepting his Life Membership, Kennedy wrote, “I am pleased to accept Life Membership in the National Rifle Association and extend to your organization every good wish for continued success.”
“The cost of freedom is always high but Americans have always paid it” in a fundraising email sent out on September 11, 2011 (above left). It was on that date that four Americans paid the ultimate price of freedom in Benghazi, Libya. There is a growing number of Americans who today “fear government tyranny”, which “gave rise to the Second Amendment”, and may be a “major danger to our nation.”
Remembering JFK, NRA Lifetime member and supporter of the Second Amendment. Lest we forget.