Did you know that JFK was the first American President to pardon a Thanksgiving turkey? He was. The tradition is often said to originate with George Bush (#41) but that was just the first Official Pardon. When JFK was presented with a turkey wearing a bib emblazoned, “Good eating, Mr. President”, he apparently turned to Jackie and declared, “Why don’t we just keep it?”
I think about that anecdote a lot when I consider JFK, because otherwise I just judge him as that jerk who really dicked over Marilyn Monroe.
Well that . . . and Civil Rights. Those two things.
JFK’s relationship with Marilyn was famously awful – you doubtless already know the basics, so I’ll attempt to keep the story brief – but, suffice to say, Marilyn Monroe wasn’t a happy woman. After her marriage to Arthur Miller ended disastrously, Arthur wrote a bunch of terrible letters discussing how he wished he had never married her, which Marilyn read, because Marilyn Monroe was Marilyn Monroe, so, of course she did.
In them, he said that he was embarrassed by her in public, and disappointed to show her off to his friends.