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LETTER: RFK and 1968

I believe there is a problem with various “experts” writing articles regarding past incidents or events that contain incorrect information. Younger readers who weren’t around during these events probably accept the inaccurate information as fact. Here is an example from the April 7 commentary by Eli Lehrer regarding parallels between 1968 and 2024, particularly regarding the Chicago riots at the Democratic convention.

The article was interesting and of value, but one point Mr. Lehrer makes is not true and impacts readers to misunderstand other items. Mr. Lehrer states that “Robert Kennedy had all but locked up the Democratic nomination when he was assassinated.” I worked for Robert Kennedy as co-chair of students organizing support for RFK on Midwest college campuses. Not only had he not “locked up” the nomination, he was trailing Hubert Humphrey in delegates by a significant amount. Many young people felt that the Democratic Party powers-that-be had controlled the process to ensure that other candidates could not beat Humphrey, who was seen as a “same old politics” type.

This false assertion in Mr. Lehrer’s article is important because it fails to tie the Chicago riots to many Democratic voters’ anger over the assassination of RFK and the subsequent nomination of Humphrey over other candidates. This disenchantment directly led to Richard Nixon’s resounding victory over Humphrey.

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