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Rosemary Kennedy, sister of President John F. Kennedy, died yesterday at the age of 86. While the "official" story is that she was born retarded, she very likely was only "shy and mentally limited - symptoms of what many suspect was dyslexia." She is shown here (looking awfully normal) in a 1938 photo with her mother Rose Kennedy four years prior to the "procedure" discussed below.
In her own diaries before the [procedure], she chronicled a life of tea dances, dress fittings, trips to Europe and a visit to the Roosevelt White House.
But as she got older, her father [Joseph Kennedy] worried his daughter's mild condition would lead her into situations that could damage the family's reputation.
So what is a good loving father and patriarch of a perfectly normal family to do? Why a frontal lobotomy of course! You know...just like the barbaric animals performed in Planet of the Apes or as was done to quiet the patients in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.
Doctors told Joseph Kennedy that a lobotomy, a medical procedure in which the frontal lobes of a patient's brain are scraped away, would help his daughter and calm her mood swings that the family found difficult to handle at home.
In Rosemary's case it was a disaster and left her permanently disabled, paralyzed on one side, incontinent and unable to speak coherently. She was never allowed to return home, but instead was spirited away to St. Coletta's School in Wisconsin.
As late as 1958 the family was maintaining the fiction that Rosemary had become a quasi nun in Wisconsin, content to renounce the glamorous world of her siblings to teach less fortunate children.
On the right, the original Kennedy children, from left to right: Eunice, John, Joe Jr., Rosemary and Kathleen. It never fails, whenever I learn something new about the Kennedy family, I'm always disgusted. Perhaps though, this helps explain an origin of the Kennedy males' incredible disrespect for women and ambivalence for women's lives. The irony: Joe Kennedy worried that Rosemary's mild condition would somehow "damage the family's reputation." Instead, his disgusting actions serve to solidify the family's reputation in my mind.
Joe Has His Daughter Lobotomized
Kennedy Who Inspired Special Olympics Dies
ABC News retains (as of the time of this posting) the original not so politically correct headline on the same AP article which Yahoo also used but subsequently changed: Retarded Kennedy Sister Dies at 86
Listed below are links to blogs that reference this post: Rosemary Kennedy Dies.
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