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Will we get through the 21st century without an assassination of a sitting American President?
On November 22, 1963, Lee Harvey Oswald shot President John F. Kennedy in Dallas as he proceeded down the street in a motorcade. Kennedy died shortly thereafter, and the nation descended into mourning. The JFK assassination not only led to countless conspiracy theories, but it also led to better Presidential security measures.
JFK was the last President killed in office. But he wasn't the first. Our nation's checkered history has witnessed a disturbing number of assassinations, including:
John Wilkes Booth famously killed President Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865.
Charles J. Guiteau shot and killed President James Garfield on September 19, 1881.
Leon Czolgosz, an anarchist, shot President William McKinley in 1901.
And there have been plenty of near misses as well. For instance, on March 30, 1981, John Hinckley Jr. shot President Reagan, who fortunately recovered from the assault.
It's been nearly 55 years since JFK's death. But how long will our collective good fortune – due in part to a vigilant, well trained Secret Service – last? More specifically, will we make it to at least 2100 without another Presidential assassination of a sitting President?
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