Skepticism About Rapacious JFK

by Richard Kostelanetz (April 2012)


On one hand, most of us relished consuming Mimi (Beardsley) Alford's recent confession that JFK deflowered her on her fourth day as a White House intern in 1962. If true, credit JFK with knowing how to seduce a 19-year-old virgin without, as she ruefully recalls, even kissing her. She also recalls that he continued screwing her, even through political crises, until his death, often while keeping his shirt on. Wow. Those are no minor achievements. To what other sitting President can such heightened talents be attributed? Credible Mimi’s story initially seems, especially when committed to print as Once Upon a Secret (2011), given what has already been revealed about JFK’s seductions.

Nonetheless, may I as a stubborn skeptic introduce some doubts? First, we already know that, once JFK became president, he favored married women, such as Mary Pinchot Meyer, who could be trusted not to tell. Why haven’t the two purportedly unattached women named Fiddle & Faddle, portrayed as his nude swimming pool buddies, similarly entered themselves in the historical record, now a half century later? Things are askew here.

Second, what’s missing from this growing literature about JFK’s predatory sexual activity is any revelation of how his known physical disabilities, coupled with his abundant use of debilitating meds, affected his desire and potency, as well they should have. If, as some claim, JFK also suffered continually from venereal diseases, shouldn’t have their immediate effects, along with secondary reactions to meds for them, likewise dampened his desire? (Remember all this occurred before the development of Viagra and its competitors.)

Considering all these facts, should we hear one self-purported mistress recall that that JFK couldn’t get his cock up, she might be telling more truth than any woman who claims him rapacious. Also how about women who refused? Some decades ago, I heard second-hand a story I’ve not seen in print about a better-looking graduate student, then at Stanford, refusing an invitation from his unnamed aides to meet the President.

There seems to be a hidden journalistic rule that the private life of every public figure is immune from revelations until one indiscretion becomes public. That accounts for why reporters talk about Bill Clinton’s purported dalliances, incredible though some of them seem (say from Paula Jones, who is visibly appearance-challenged), without investigating his wife’s love life.

I tried to read Amanda B. Carpenter’s The Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy Dossier on Hillary Clinton (Regnery, 2006) to learn about her other lovers, even prior to her meeting or marrying Bill, but turned up nothing. That’s nothing where I expected it. In the real world, don’t the wives of cheating husbands often reply in kind? I’m now more curious about Hillary than Bill or Jack.

A second journalistic rule appears to hold that, once a seducer is reported as succeeding, he never fails, even though every man or woman sexually experienced knows otherwise.

Incidentally, why didn’t Kennedy kiss? Did he have bad breath? Second, when will the journalist gumshoes tell me who else slept with Jackie Kennedy before her widowhood?

Richard Kostelanetz survives in New York, where he was born, unemployed and thus overworked.

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