Talk:Assassination of John F. Kennedy

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Former good article Assassination of John F. Kennedy was one of the History good articles, but it has been removed from the list. There are suggestions below for improving the article to meet the good article criteria. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.

Claim that agent Hickey shot the president by accident[edit]

An editor or two have tried several times to include information about the claim that Agent Hickey, in the follow-up car to the presidential limo, accidentally discharged his weapon and fired the shot which killed Kennedy.

This has been removed by me and others on several occasions, and there are several good reasons to keep this out.

1- this is a fringe theory, and has been widely debunked by other researchers. This page isn't the place for fringe theories.

2- photographic evidence shows Hickey seated and therefore not in a position to fire the shot (photos immediately after the assassination show the follow-up car's windshield intact - a shot would have had to pierced the windshield to have hit Kennedy.)

Contrary to the claim of the poster, there indeed IS photographic evidence - in the Bronson film - which shows Kennedy at the moment of the fatal shot AND Hickey still seated in his car. Canada Jack (talk) 17:36, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

Agreed. Theory is covered John F. Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories. Joegoodfriend (talk) 17:49, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
I looked at the distant and blurry Bronson film shot with a shaky handheld 8mm amateur camera and it did not prove anything as far as I can see. If you visit the JFK-Donahue Theory webpage - http://jfk-donahue.weebly.com/the-bronson-film.html - and read its contents you will see that this (and single images extracted from this film) cannot reasonably be used as evidence that Hickey did not shoot JFK, while the accidental discharge theory is entirely plausible as Hickey is the only other person known to be in possession of a rifle in Dealey Plaza when JFK was shot and was in close proximity and behind JFK when he was shot in the head.
The overwhelming majority of witnesses reported hearing three shots, with the majority of witnesses also saying that the second and third shots were fired in close succession so could not both have been fired by Oswald who was using a bolt action rifle - http://jfkthelonegunmanmyth.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/misrepresenting-shooting-sequence.html These witness testimonies are backed up by the Dictabelt recording from an open police microphone - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nq-ZJ99qaCc
Thus the theory is entirely plausible, as can be seen by watching the documentary 'JFK: The Smoking Gun'?' by Colin McLaren - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2945784/ - and not a ludicrous fringe theory like he was killed by Nazis who wanted revenge for losing WW2, or a plot by time travelling aliens, neither of which have any supporting evidence whatsoever. Where are the images that supposedly "prove" that Hickey did not shoot JFK? There are none that I have found but feel free to correct me. I would also like to know if editors who oppose any reference to this theory in this Wikipedia article have seen McLaren's documentary. CodeBadger (talk) 05:11, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Your sources aren't reliable, and your original research not appropriate in an encyclopedia. Nor is this talk page a forum to discuss a fringe theory. Thank you, Drmies (talk) 05:13, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for taking the time to reply. Odd that you don't think a published book ('JFK-Smoking-Gun'), a documentary based on the book with the same name that was co-commissioned by the Special Broadcasting Service (a government funded broadcaster in Australia), and the dictabelt evidence "aren't reliable" in your mind, but apparently have an altogether different view about a blurry 8mm film that no reasonable person could present as evidence of anything. Wikipedia states that "articles should be based on reliable, published sources" and I provided a reliable published source in the form of the book published by Hachette Australia which the documentary is based on. You assert that the accidental shooting theory is a "fringe theory", but Wikipedia states that "fringe theories are ideas which depart significantly from a prevailing or mainstream theory", in this case that there was a lone assassin, but the accidental shooting theory does not change the mainstream theory that Oswald was likely the only person who tried to kill JFK. As a matter of interest, have you seen the documentary or read the book? CodeBadger (talk) 06:18, 15 January 2017 (UTC)
I looked at the distant and blurry Bronson film shot with a shaky handheld 8mm amateur camera and it did not prove anything as far as I can see. Others disagree. Close analysis of Bronson's film shows Hickey not yet standing at the moment of the fatal shot, but rising shortly afterwards, therefore the theory is not only unlikely, it's impossible.
The overwhelming majority of witnesses reported hearing three shots, with the majority of witnesses also saying that the second and third shots were fired in close succession The witnesses who actually saw the sniper in the TSBD window report he fired those last two shots. The shots may have been "closer in succession," but given the testimony about the actual sniper, since he was seen doing it obviously could be done. Further, the vast majority of witnesses heard shots coming from a single direction, again casting doubt on the plausibility of the Hickey shot - we'd expect a good number of witnesses to report shots coming from several directions, especially witnesses who were between Hickey and the TSBD - and there were many.
For this and other reasons it is indeed a "fringe" theory. And it certainly was not part of the Warren Commission or HSCA findings.
Besides all that, this page is a general overview of the assassination centred around the major findings of the two main investigations. Even if the theory is on its face plausible (though not proven), it is one of only perhaps 100s of theories about what "really" happened. Unless a new investigaion concludes that, indeed, Hickey fired the fatal shot, or a shot at all, it resides on the fringe theory page. Otherwise, we'd be giving more credence to this theory than to an explanation as to why the Warren Commission thought Oswald shot Kennedy, surely a more fundamental aspect of the assassination than this pet theory of a few, so the "weight" policy also applies. Canada Jack (talk) 16:11, 14 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. You cling to the blurry 8mm film which is not evidence of anything, and the handful of witnesses who allegedly saw Oswald fire two shots, which does not mean Hickey did not fire the third shot. It is notoriously difficult to tell which direction gunfire came from in an urban situation due to buildings which can greatly impact the perception of where a gunshot originated from. As noted above, Wikipedia states that "fringe theories are ideas which depart significantly from a prevailing or mainstream theory", in this case being that there was likely a lone assassin, but the accidental shooting theory does not change the mainstream theory that Oswald was likely the only assassin as Hickey is only claimed to have accidentally shot JFK so is not a "second assassin" because there was not criminal intent to assassinate JFK. As a matter of interest, have you seen the documentary or read the book? CodeBadger (talk) 06:18, 15 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. You cling to the blurry 8mm film which is not evidence of anything, Actually, it is. It's been closely analyzed by many and shows Hickey still seated at the time of the fatal shot, which makes the theory impossible. He only rose AFTER the fatal shot, which matches witness testimony.
and the handful of witnesses who allegedly saw Oswald fire two shots, which does not mean Hickey did not fire the third shot. You imply these witnesses who saw a sniper were lying? Several witnesses SAW the TSBD sniper fire the final shots, period. Brennan, who the CT crowd like to dismiss owing to his refusal to ID Oswald initially, nevertheless stated he saw the sniper take his final shot, as did Amos Lee Euins who heard the first shot, and saw the sniper fire the 2nd and 3rd shots. These two witnesses did not hear shots from elsewhere.
It is notoriously difficult to tell which direction gunfire came from... Sure, but you'd have us believe that a shot from a completely different location than the TSBD would be perceived as coming from the same direction the other shots came from (95% said shots came from one direction), yet fired from the middle of Elm Street, no less. THAT is not credible. Further, NO WITNESSES - NONE - claim a shot came from the trailing vehicle, NO ONE says an agent fired his rifle - surely someone would have noticed this? Like the agents in the car itself? Someone watching the motorcade from behind as it went down Elm? (You may note I used the same "one direction" argument against the knoll theory, but the virtue of the knoll claims is there are multiple witnesses who at least claim to have heard shots from there, unlike the Hickey theory.)
As for your comments on fringe theories - which is in the end the main reason why this theory should not reside on this page - you argue that this theory would not be different from the WC/HSCA conclusions as Oswald was the assassin and Hickey's actions were accidental, therefore there was no criminal intent. No, that doesn't wash. The theory is that Hickey killed the president, whether by accident or whatever is neither here nor there, because this notion is completely absent from the conclusions of both the WC and the HSCA. And while it is not a "conspiracy theory," it is still a fringe theory as it reaches a far different conclusion than the main investigations.
Don't be misled by the notion that a "fringe theory" is some intrinsically ridiculous or implausible scenario. It for the purposes of wikipedia stands for a theory which stands outside the mainstream understanding of the subject, in this case, the official interpretation of what happened that day in Dallas. Putting aside the objections I made, and assuming for the sake of argument that the case that Hickey shot JFK is airtight and clearly correct, the theory would STILL not be allowed on this page until it can be shown that this has become the mainstream official explanation of the assassination (or the generally accepted accurate explanation, supplanting some of the conclusions of the other investigations). This theory is nowhere near that threshold, even if accurate.
As a matter of interest, have you seen the documentary or read the book? No. Canada Jack (talk) 00:06, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. Much appreciated. You made some excellent points. I had hoped you will watch the documentary ‘JFK: The Smoking Gun’, as I would like your views on the accidental shooting theory by Bonar Menninger and Colin McLaren’s expansion of this theory with his evidence of this accident being covered up.
I accept that most people consider the accidental shooting theory a “fringe theory” so should not be noted in the main article as this would give this theory far too much weight. I shall merely note this theory in the ‘Fringe theories’ subsection. As the accidental shooting theory is not a conspiracy theory it cannot be placed in a ‘Conspiracy theory’ subsection, so I renamed this subsection rather than add a separate ‘Accidental shooting theory’ subsection which would have given too much weight to the accidental shooting theory. The ‘Fringe theories’ subsection will allow other non-conspiracy theories to be noted, not just the accidental shooting theory, along with conspiracy theories. CodeBadger (talk) 04:26, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
This material has been removed again. I believe this is number 6 or 7 for CodeBadger alone, and [removed] by at least 4 different editors. It's not a question of whether it should be go in as a realistic theory, or labelled as a conspiracy theory or as fringe theory, it's a question of whether it should be in this article at all. Based on the number of times it has been removed, the number of different editors who have done so, and the comments above by other editors it appears there is no consensus to include it. There is an article devoted to fringe and conspiracy theories and this material is already covered there. Meters (talk) 09:36, 27 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. As a matter of interest, have you seen the documentary 'JFK: The Smoking Gun'? CodeBadger (talk) 01:53, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, this is getting tiresome. In terms of weight, this theory carries very little, at least in comparison to some of the main conspiracy theories which is why, if we are to include it here, it warrants a sentence at most, NOT a separate section AND a photo of the agent (both of which I earlier removed). There are literally HUNDREDS of theories of what "really" happened, which is why on this page we focus on the conclusions of the two major investigations, and mention that there are conspiracy theories, without delving into them in any detail. To include a photo AND a separate section on this is wildly out of proportion to the prominence of this theory, at least in comparison to, say, claims of a knoll assassin or involvement by the mafia/CIA etc. As I said above, even if for the sake of argument this theory was obviously correct and iron-clad in its conclusions, it would only warrant inclusion if many sources said as much. Canada Jack (talk) 19:34, 27 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. In hindsight it was not a good idea to include a separate subsection and photo for the accidental shooting theory as it gives this theory too much weight, so I will only include a short reference to it in a single sentence in the Conspiracy theories section as you suggested. As a matter of interest, will you watch the documentary 'JFK: The Smoking Gun'? CodeBadger (talk) 01:53, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
I've removed it. As I said in your talk page edit warring warning Don't restore this material in any form unless you get consensus on the talk page that it should be in this article. I don't see consensus to include this. Meters (talk) 02:19, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
I and Canada Jack think a short reference to the accidental shooting theory in the Conspiracy theories section should be included. Thus unless somebody else supports you then the consensus (2 to 1) is that it should be included. CodeBadger (talk) 02:37, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────This has been removed multiple times by several different editors. I don't see User:Canada Jack's comments above as agreement that this should be included. Let's let him say what he means, and let's let the other editors who have removed the material comment. Meters (talk) 02:46, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for your reply. Good point. CodeBadger (talk) 02:40, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
@CodeBadger: Please be aware of a few points about the way Wikipedia works. Don't try to bolster your argument by speaking for another editor. You run the risk of misrepresenting that editor, and I believe that is exactly what you did. Other editors can speak for themselves; they don't need you trying to speak for them. Secondly, consensus is not a vote. Please carefully read both pages that I just linked. Even if there were another editor here who entirely agreed with you (and there is not), that alone would not constitute a consensus. Furthermore, as a participant in this discussion, you do not declare consensus. That is for an uninvolved editor to do. Read that page as well. Sundayclose (talk) 03:25, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. You made some excellent points while the 'consensus' and 'not a vote' articles were eye opening. CodeBadger (talk) 02:40, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
I put this note below - should be here. I'll repeat what I said yesterday.
I just want to clarify something here. At best, the claim that Hickey accidentally shot the president deserves a brief mention, not what was here for a while - a separate section, and an image showing Hickey with the rifle shortly after the assassination. However, looking at what exists now in the conspiracy section, all we have is a mention of the people and/or groups often cited as being behind the assassination, and a photo of the knoll with a reference to the fact many believe a shot or shots came from there. That's it for conspiracy (other than the HSCA dictabelt conclusion). Given that, it's hard to justify including this Hickey information which details a specific allegation when NONE of the other allegations are detailed. It therefore more properly resides on the conspiracy theories page. An adjustment to the lede there could readily mention that, while not a conspiracy theory, the claim the assassination was in part an accident has also been made. Again, until such time as this theory becomes a more generally accepted explanation for the fatal wound, to include it violates wikipedia's undue weight policy. Canada Jack (talk) 18:34, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. Much appreciated. As the accidental shooting theory is not a conspiracy theory it seemed to me it needed its own section or a brief reference in a Fringe theories section. That said, one could make a brief reference to it in the Conspiracy theories section as McLaren asserts that there was a conspiracy to cover up the accidental shooting, along the lines of the following:
Many conspiracy theories posit that the assassination involved people or organizations other than Lee Harvey Oswald. Most current theories put forth a criminal conspiracy involving parties as varied as the CIA, the Mafia, Vice President Johnson, Cuban President Fidel Castro, the KGB, or some combination of those entities.{144-Summers} Some conspiracy theories claim that the United States government covered up crucial information in the aftermath of the assassination, including facts that would have supported the theory that the fatal shot to the head was from driver Agent George Hickey’s AR-15 rifle which they claim accidentally discharged.{145-Menninger}{146-McLaren}
Thank you for taking the time to consider this. CodeBadger (talk) 02:40, 30 January 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I see no reason to continue this discussion. Over the last two weeks one editor is repeating the same ideas and requests again and again in the face of opposition by several editors. It's time to drop the stick. I ask that an uninvolved editor close the discussion. Sundayclose (talk) 03:43, 30 January 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for your reply. You might like to consider if referring to the person you are replying to in the third person and describing me as "uninvolved" is disrespectful in light of the fact that I want to improve the article in question, thus a violation of the Wikipedia's civility and polite discourse policies. CodeBadger (talk) 00:29, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
@CodeBadger: Look again. I asked that an uninvolved editor close the discussion. That wasn't directed at you. And the last time I checked, use of third person in English is not disrespectful. What IS in fact disrespectful is violation of Wikpedia policy, which you have done, as well as misrepresenting what others say here. Sundayclose (talk) 02:17, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. Sorry about the misunderstanding about the "uninvolved editor". If you don't think a reply in which you refer to the person you are responding to in the third person is not disrespectful you are either ignorant or dishonest. CodeBadger (talk) 05:25, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Agreed. Codebanger, the Hickey mention does not warrant inclusion on this page for the reasons cited. The insistence on including a specific allegation outside of the HSCA/WC conclusions when NONE of the far more well-known allegations are detailed is attaching far too much weight to this theory, as few subscribe to this theory in comparison to the many who subscribe to the various conspiracy theories. Whether it is or is not a "conspiracy theory" per se is completely beside the point. Canada Jack (talk) 15:26, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
You make some good points. Rather than mention the accidental shooting theory directly it might be best to just note that that there are theories that involve people who unintentionally helped Oswald kill JFK, which would include the accidental shooting theory without mentioning it specifically, as follows:
Many conspiracy theories posit that the assassination involved people or organizations other than Lee Harvey Oswald who intentionally or unintentionally helped Oswald. Most current theories put forth a criminal conspiracy involving parties as varied as the CIA, the Mafia, Vice President Johnson, Cuban President Fidel Castro, the KGB, or some combination of those entities.
Thank you for your time. CodeBadger (talk) 00:29, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
What's the point of suggesting a paragraph that is already in the article in exactly that wording, and has been there in almost identical wording for at least 18 months? Stop wasting our time. Meters (talk) 00:53, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for your reply. Sorry for wasting your time. CodeBadger (talk) 05:25, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
CodeBadger (sorry about the unintended spelling error above), you are missing the point. There are literally A THOUSAND-PLUS authors etc who claim the CIA/Mafia/whomever were behind a conspiracy to kill the president. In contrast, there are, what? FIVE who claim Hickey did it? A very tiny number, whatever it is. To change the line to "many conspiracy theories posit [others] ...who intentionally or unintentionally helped Oswald" is not only grossly exaggerating the reality of what's being claimed (virtually NONE claim anyone "unintentionally" helped Oswald) AND... it's simply not true that "many" conspiracy theories posit others helped Oswald - very few in fact claim Oswald actually fired any shots! Likely something like 90% of the conspiracy theories claim Oswald had nothing to do with it!
Your attempts to gain a consensus to include the Hickey information have failed, so it's time to stop beating that dead horse. Canada Jack (talk) 03:39, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for taking the time to reply. Two authors (Menninger and McLaren) claim in their books that Hickey accidentally shot JFK in the head, thus unintentionally helped kill JFK. As this accidental shooting theory is not a conspiracy theory, where in Wikipedia do you think it would be appropriate to note this fringe theory by these two authors? A fringe theories page relating to the JFK assassination that incorporated all fringe theories including conspiracy theories and the accidental shooting theory? CodeBadger (talk) 05:25, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Please stop. We have an article that covers fringe theories. The article already covers Menninger's theory. You know this because you replied to User:Joegoodfriend's post saying htat and linking to the article almost three weeks ago in this same thread. Again, stop wasting our time. Meters (talk) 05:38, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. You are right that a Wikipedia article covers fringe theories including the accidental shooting theory - John F. Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories. I will stop making comments in this thread as requested. CodeBadger (talk) 00:38, 1 February 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Suggestion for those who want this section closed: If only one editor comments from this point forward, it is easier for an uninvolved editor to close the discussion. The more back-and-forth beating the dead horse there is, the longer a pointless discussion stays open. Just a thought. Thanks. Sundayclose (talk) 14:56, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

I know this is three months late, but I want !vote opposed to inclusion of the accidental discharge theory. Between Mortal Error and Colin McClaren, this theory has more than enough coverage in Wikipedia. That is all. - Location (talk) 01:39, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

Renaming "fringe theories"[edit]

"Fringe theories" is not at all appropriate as the section title. I think it should be renamed to "conspiracy theories". usernamekiran (talk) 23:39, 20 January 2017 (UTC) usernamekiran (talk) 23:39, 20 January 2017 (UTC)

Renamed the section to "Conspiracy Theories", as "fringe theories" was not an appropriate title for this section. usernamekiran (talk) 20:04, 21 January 2017 (UTC)

The name was changed from 'Conspiracy theories' to 'Fringe theories' because a conspiracy theory is a type of fringe theory but not all fringe theories are conspiracy theories. That said, I have added a 'Conspiracy theories' subsection within the 'Fringe theories' section which might be more to your liking. CodeBadger (talk) 06:14, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

Thank you CodeBadger. I really appreciate what you did. Now i understand he difference between fringe and conspiracy theories. I also feel a little guilty cuz of the efforts you had to take for making he changes. I was not trying to get it to become as per my liking. I was simply trying to make it more encyclopaedic : - ) Thanks a lot again! usernamekiran (talk) 00:39, 27 January 2017 (UTC)

I hope you will support me and Canada Jack in the 'Claim that agent Hickey shot the president by accident' thread above about including a short reference to the accidental shooting theory in the Conspiracy theories section that is opposed by Meters. Thank you for your time. CodeBadger (talk) 02:36, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
As some editors don't want a Fringe theories section the accidental shooting theory should have its own section as it cannot be placed in the Conspiracy theories section as it is not a conspiracy theory (other than a brief mention in relation to there allegedly being a conspiracy to cover us this alleged accidental shooting). So I had wondered if there was consensus to have a short Accidental shooting theory section under the Conspiracy theories section along the lines of the following with an image box showing Hickey with the AR-15 rifle (which is relevant to this section and entirely fair as the Conspiracy theories section has an image box). It is short as I don't want to give this fringe theory undue weight as most fringe theories are conspiracy theories. CodeBadger (talk) 03:14, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
As I said in the thread above, It's not a question of whether it should be go in as a realistic theory, or labelled as a conspiracy theory or as fringe theory, it's a question of whether it should be in this article at all. Trying to rehash this issue in a thread about what to call the section is not appropriate. If you wish to discuss whether this material should be in the article then do so in the thread that's actually discussing that issue. I have removed your proposed section form this thread. Meters (talk) 06:20, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
My bad. Thanks for your reply. CodeBadger (talk) 01:53, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
I just want to clarify something here. At best, the claim that Hickey accidentally shot the president deserves a brief mention, not what was here for a while - a separate section, and an image showing Hickey with the rifle shortly after the assassination. However, looking at what exists now in the conspiracy section, all we have is a mention of the people and/or groups often cited as being behind the assassination, and a photo of the knoll with a reference to the fact many believe a shot or shots came from there. That's it for conspiracy (other than the HSCA dictabelt conclusion). Given that, it's hard to justify including this Hickey information which details a specific allegation when NONE of the other allegations are detailed. It therefore more properly resides on the conspiracy theories page. An adjustment to the lede there could readily mention that, while not a conspiracy theory, the claim the assassination was in part an accident has also been made. Again, until such time as this theory becomes a more generally accepted explanation for the fatal wound, to include it violates wikipedia's undue weight policy. Canada Jack (talk) 03:25, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

CodeBadger: Given the 1978 finding of the US Congress that multiple shots were fired during the assassination, accompanied by its distancing statements regarding the indeterminability of any specific details regarding whatever deadly circumstances or level of conspiracy may have been attached to the event, in the face of the usual impossibility throughout the years of getting that Congress to commit itself to any controversial dicta about anything at all -- including the obvious and serious flaws and omissions of its previous finding, The Warren Report -- can any reasonably and logistically plausible theory about the assassination's mechanics that doesn't involve obvious idiocy like yahoos from other realms of space & time or like entities, really be casually called or classified as a "fringe theory," with the phrase's inescapable connotations of absurdity, ridiculousness, and irrational speculation (when its not discussing the tailoring of rugs or draperiess) be appropriate for a supposedly "neutral" article? As I teach my university classes on argumentation, neutrality is completely impossible when it uses & thereby accepts as appropriate the use of rhetorical and logical fallacies as this kind of loaded language essays. I don't mean to be trivial when pointing this out, as I am aware through many years of studying the various theories surrounding it on an academic level, that many of them seem unfounded in their logical truths, and others seem more intent on sensationalizing things in an attempt to cash in on the seemingly-going-dormant phenomena of speculation about the event, but to use a prejudicial categorical in a realm of facts, however satisfying its application may be, can never be an error on the side of truth. The most important way to treat such unexplained events may indeed be to disclaim certain proposed narratives, but ridiculing them has the unfortunate effect of closing off discourse on their very subject matter, as Gerald Posner so notoriously did in his book "Case Closed" (given his previous bibliography), itself an obvious attempt to cash in on the assassination, once the great majority of people had come to believe it was of course a conspiracy -- by offering up a theory claiming it was not. (I once taught a quite lively junior/senior-level university course on the fictions [specifically, novels] generated by the assassination, and while we did not, of course, treat the "theories" contained in our course texts as truthful, the examination of their construction was quite beneficial to thinking clearly and critically about situations such as surround the JFK assassination, with the more unbelievable examples just as necessary to the matter as the more believable arguments). Now I am quite aware that the heading "fringe theories" has been removed, and rightly so. My purpose here is merely to help you develop a more complete idea of what constitutes a "fringe theory" about an unexplained evert, and what does not. In most cases the phrase is best applied to handbooks on constructing draperies and rugs. Thank you for reading. Rtelkin (talk) 20:53, 6 May 2017 (UTC)

A few comments on the above. ...the usual impossibility throughout the years of getting that Congress to commit itself to any controversial dicta about anything at all... Yet that same Congress concluded there had been a likely conspiracy. While they did not indentify any specific players, there was a good reason for that - there was no compelling evidence to tie any of the usual suspects to Oswald and the events of Dealey Plaza. So, this is not a case of a wishy-washy timid committee afraid to get too controversial: it was a case of a committee making the intellectually honest decision that the evidence was not strong enough to make any conclusion on who the culprits were.
As for the general comments about the flaws of the Warren Commission and the HSCA itself, this ignores the fact that whatever happened that day in Dallas wasn't altered by the incompentence or what have you of those investigative bodies and others involved in the events. The Bethesda autopsy surgeons may have been out of their depth, for example, but subsequent panels of experts all agree that they came to the correct conclusions, given the evidence.
As for what makes a theory "fringe," that's not so nearly subjective as Rtelkin likes to pretend it is. It is not merely a denial of what the "official" theories conclude; it is a rejection of most of the evidence with which those conclusions have been made, indeed of the very basis of standard detective work and forensic investigations. The Hickey claim is a case in point. This is a "fringe" theory not merely because it is at odds with what the WC/HSCA conclude, but because it requires one to reject - or simply ignore - the reams of evidence and testing done which concluded that the fatal bullet was indeed fired from Oswald's rifle and fired from the direction of the TSBD. IOW, it makes a claim without addressing countervailing evidence, very strong countervailing evidence, I might add. Further, it is "fringe" as it makes a claim with no other evidence other than it seemingly occured to someone that, hey, maybe the shot came accidently from a trailing vehicle. There were no witnesses who claimed Hickey fired the shot, indeed I am aware of ZERO reports of claims the shots were heard from the direction of that vehicle, or any other evidence, for that matter, which suggests that the shot came Hickey. A claim with zero evidence backing it up is rightly considered "fringe," especially given all the other evidence establishing a different trajectory for the fatal shot which doesn't match the purported Hickey shot. Further, the authors seemingly think the onus is not on them to show the veracity of the theory, anticipating the objections, but on the critics to prove their theory wrong, another hallmark of "fringe" theories.
And this applies to nearly all of the claims which are considered "fringe." But they often go further. When presented with the evidence that establishes a single sniper, no other snipers, and shots from the rear hitting Kennedy, the fringe theorists often dismiss this evidence as forged or planted. If they had evidence for these claims, they might have a case, but they don't and these claims of forgery and tampering are more reasonably seen as explaining away rather than addressing counter-evidence. Indeed, more often than not, claims which have been thoroughly examined and found wanting - say, that the photos of Oswald with the rifle were forged - are nevertheless STILL repeated as being "ignored" by the very bodies which have long since debunked them.
"Fringe" theories are considered as such for ignoring the evidence which firmly establishes the scenarios spelled out by the WC and HSCA. ANd while both investigations have rightly come under withering scrutiny, their basic conclusions (save for the dictabelt evidence) has withstood the test of time. "Fringe" theories promote scenarios which often lack any evidence at all, while ignoring countervailing evidence, and most often make conclusions on the basis of what group stood to gain from Kennedy's death instead of how said groups were actually connected to Oswald and/or the events of that day in Dallas. Canada Jack (talk) 16:56, 21 June 2017 (UTC)

Coordinates[edit]

The following coordinate fixes are needed for

Grt

92.11.198.21 (talk) 17:06, 19 March 2017 (UTC)

Coordinates given link to appropriate place on Dealey Plaza. IdreamofJeanie (talk) 17:14, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
erm... OP asked for coordinates to be fixed: coordinates are correct, so I answered "Coordinates correct". problem? IdreamofJeanie (talk) 08:00, 20 March 2017 (UTC)
  • I just didnt understand the conversation, so I asked you. Ras.gifusernamekiran (talk) 13:24, 21 March 2017 (UTC)

Notice[edit]

Related article is being discussed here:

Wikipedia:Fringe_theories/Noticeboard#CIA_Kennedy_assassination_conspiracy_theory

--David Tornheim (talk) 15:10, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Michael Parenti[edit]

Material cited to conspiracy believer Michael Parenti's website has been added multiple times.[1][2] The material from that website states:

Sociologist David Simone compiled a study of the books published on the Kennedy assassination, some 600 titles, and found that 20 percent of them blamed either a lone assassin or the mafia or the Cubans or Russians. The other 80 percent ascribed the assassination to a conspiracy linked to U.S. intelligence agencies, some of these also saying that mobsters were involved at the operational level. Ignoring this 80 percent of the literature, publications like the New York Times and Washington Post have listed the various theories about the JFK assassination as follows: (a) lone assassin, (b) mafia, (c) Cubans/Soviets, and (d) the "Oliver Stone movie theory." In other words, they ignore the existence of a vast literature from which the movie is derived and ascribe the critical theme presented within the film solely to the imagination of a film maker. The press would have us believe that the notion of a state-sponsored assassination conspiracy and coverup came out of a movie--when actually the movie was based on a rich and revealing investigative literature.

First, Michael Parenti is not a reliable source for information on the assassination of JFK. This particular section is Parenti's attempt to support the "state within a state" conspiracy. Second, the material is self-published. Third, the only hits I can find for a sociologist named "David Simone" are linked to Parenti's writings. -Location (talk) 22:28, 3 June 2017 (UTC)