I lived in Massachusetts for a long time. Ted Kennedy was my Senator. There didn’t seem to be anything I could do about that. He was known to be a womanizer who did not always have the best interests of America in mind. At one point he wrote a letter to a Russian leader asking for help in making sure Ronald Reagan did not get elected. He also had addiction problems and was not noted for telling the truth. Nevertheless, he continued to get elected. I don’t know if the people of Massachusetts didn’t realize the kind of person he was or if they didn’t care. At any rate, the truth about Ted Kennedy is now coming out.
Yesterday The National Review posted an article about the movie “Chappaquiddick.” The movie deals with the events on Martha’s Vineyard the night Mary Jo Kopechne was killed. The movie is an honest portrayal (as honest as possible considering we really don’t know exactly what the chain of events was) of the events of July 18, 1969.
The article concludes:
Only the patriarch himself, Joe Kennedy (Bruce Dern), who is undone by a stroke and has only four months to live, reacts with the proper fury, slapping Ted on behalf of the nation. Imagine having sons like Joe Jr., John, and Robert and being left with only this one, the one expelled from Harvard for cheating, the one who was cited for reckless driving while a law student. Ted himself recognizes the futility of trying to match his legendary brothers: After what they did, he asks, what sobriquet does that leave for me? The fat one? The dumb one? An early scene of Kennedy racing his sailboat nails his personality: sloppy, vain, entitled, a man you wouldn’t trust to change your tire.
Yet in the end, aided by a confluence of forces both extraterrestrial (Apollo 11, which dominated the news that week) and tribal (Ted Sorensen, the family expert in blowing smoke), Senator Kennedy managed to save his career. All that Massachusetts voters required was a sincere apology, and he could fake that.
And so we had Ted Kennedy in the Senate from 1962 until 2009 doing untold damage to the country and to the U.S. Constitution.