And although he was President for less than three years I believe that the much of the progress of this half century has been testament to the scope of John Kennedy’s dream, the worth of the ideals he lived for, the breadth of hope he inspired in us, and most of all - amid all the wit, style, elegance and statesmanship that adorned the Kennedy Presidency - his summons to service - one that never fails to inspire people to see farther and reach higher, a call which still reverberates around the world and always will.
(Let’s skip over the wit, style and elegance bit.)
Brown was fond of saying back when he was Chancellor and asked about his ambitions to replace Tony Blair, that it’s not the office you hold that matters but what you achieve with it.
True enough, although I don’t believe anybody ever actually swallowed that ‘non-denial denial’. But then I don’t think we were intended to swallow it.
What’s also true is that it’s not the time you’re in office for, but how you use that time. I doubt that even assassination would lead people decades hence to look back fondly on Brown; but he has the ability to achieve things, even if his time at the top is a brief as JFK’s, that will set the tone for time to come.