Vietnam war protests and the antiwar music of the 1960’s
AP us history
The Vietnam War had a huge impact on the American people that will not soon be forgotten. During this period of time America was facing many serious challenges all at once. Americans were at war fighting for freedom and democracy because of the fear of the domino effect; a theory that a communist victory in one country would lead to a chain reaction of communist takeovers in neighboring countries. It was the young Americans who stood up to voice their opinions concerning this war and created an antiwar culture whose ideology has continued to have a profound impact on American society up to the present day. Due to the opposition towards Vietnam War, there were a number of demonstrations, particularly among students, calling for the US to end its involvement in Vietnam between 19631965. Student for Democratic Society (SDS) organized the first national antiwar demonstration in Washington, which consisted of 20,000 people. The Vietnam war the first war with a strong presence of antiwar culture and certainly was not the last. Vietnam was the beginning of a new era of young people in America
Youth Protest of the Vietnam War In 1961 president Kennedy decided to send American troops to Vietnam to stop the spread of Communism and to show the United States' strength of resolve. At the time he did not know the turmoil he would bring to his Allison1
own country. The United States was split between those who believed it was our job to get involved in Vietnam and those who thought it was none of our business. As the war continued people's opinions intensified, especially student's. Youth protests during the 1960's changed the way many Americans viewed the Vietnam War. In the early 1960's protests first became a way of change for the civil rights movement. Then as men started going off to war it became a way of displaying activism. Liberal cities with big universities were the first to experience the antiwar movement. The cities of Ann Arbor, Bloomington, Chicago, East Lansing, Lawrence, Madison, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis saw the movement in full effect. Some people believed that the protesters were a disgrace for betraying their own country (Dudley 83). "Teachins" became a way of educating students about what was really happening in Vietnam. Speeches, songs, discussions, and seminars helped get the students involved at the "teachins". After the first "teach in" occurred on March 24, 1965, at the University of Michigan, hundreds more started taking place within a few weeks. All the administration could do was to send for government officials called "truth teams". When that did not work, the government realized they should not reveal their policies to the public (Dougan and Weiss 8788)
The students from the University of California at Berkely felt like a minority when no one took them seriously at their campus demonstration in September 1965 because of their long hair and ragged clothes (Kent 74). Many youth joined organizations that were against the war. They would go to protests such as the one that took place on April 17, 1965. The 20,000 protesters that were present in Washington that day showed
how the peace movement was growing. A few days later, thirtythree antiwar organizations came together to form the National Coordinating Committee To End the War in Vietnam. Another group, Vietnam Day Committee, attempted to stop troop trains but were unsuccessful. Both groups joined together to lead demonstrations in ninetythree cities, in what was called the "International Days of Protest." The "International Days of Protest" that took place on October 15 and 16 in 1965 included 100,000 activists that participated not only in the cities but on college campuses as well. The way of protest in each of these places varied. In Madison, eleven people were ...
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