True, BUT, I use the historical method. I wasn't alive then. I was born on Dec 22 1964 exactly 13 months after JFK was killed. But I can still write an accurate history of the event. How? Simple.<quoted text> AT least we know JFK died of a gunshot wound to the head, as there is at least one movie of it. Even with that, there are still inaccuracies in the reporting and conspiracy theories galore.
The historian doesn't need to witness the event. It is better if an eye-witness does decide to write, but in most cases, it's a journal or diary entry or a letter that is written. Now remember, I said imagine that we don't have any photos or the famous Zapruder film. So what would I have to do to write an accurate history even though I wasn't an actual eye-witness?
I would have to interview eye witnesses. Where would I find eye-witnesses? Well I would start by going to Dallas and looking in the already printed archives. I would ask for access to Dallas Police Dept. reports. I would look for the names of witnesses who still might be alive and living in the area. It's only been 49 years since that fateful day. Now suppose I find somebody who was 20 years old and saw the fatal shot to JFK's head. They saw the impact of the bullet, the fragments of skull and brain matter. Gross huh? Do you think something that gruesome could escape somebody's memory?
Okay, so let's imagine that I found only one eye-witness in the Dallas area. But now let's also imagine that in my search for living eye-witnesses, I find the daughter of a now-deceased motorcycle cop who rode near JFK's limo. Let's imagine that she was 12 at the time and that she overheard him telling his wife (the girl's mother) everything he saw, and she saw him break down and cry over it. Wouldn't that memory stick with her? You can claim it's hearsay, but it would be credible hearsay because she has to admit that her dad broke down and cried, which may be damaging to his reputation as a seasoned cop. If that's the image that triggers her memory, then it's likely to be credible even though it may be embarrassing to the memory of her father.
So now we have one direct eye-witness, and one person who knows an eye-witness in Dallas, Texas. Where do we go next? We hop on a plane and fly to Washington D.C. We can ask to look at the public reports in the National Archives. From these, we get the names of those who might have been in the Presidential entourage that day. Then we start inquiring as to where they might live now (any near D.C.?) and attempt to contact them. Let's imagine that we find Mr. Clint Hill,(Jackie Kennedy's Secret Service Agent) and he's willing to give an interview. He was the one who leaped onto the back of the limousine as it sped away to the hospital after the fatal shot. Does Mr Hill feel guilty that he couldn't protect the President? If so, this is a traumatic emotion. If he admits this emotion, it's highly likely that we can trust what he says about the events of that day.
So using just 2 primary sources and one secondary source, I can still write an accurate account of what happened on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, even 50 years after the event.
This is the way historicity is researched and written about WN. It applies to all kinds of historical research regardless of whether it's secular or religious.
And just in case you think we can't find Mr. Clint Hill, 50 years after the fact, check this out. The video at the end is heartrending.