Essay 2 DRAFT

Essay 2 DRAFT - Cesar McFarlin WRT 205 Kathleen Founds 3-...

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Cesar McFarlin WRT 205 Kathleen Founds 3- 23 – 2008 “The Accused: Collateral Damage” During the time of the Red Scare the United States relived the Salem witch trial all over again. Communism was regarded the same way Iraq is today, evil. Written in the diaries of President Truman were words that showed his concern on the subject. “The Reds, phonies and the parlor pinks seem to be banded together and are becoming a national danger” (Fariello 31) these words were written on March 12, 1947. A year after writing this entry a request was made before Congress for a global war against communism. This act would later be remembered as the Truman Doctrine. What was believed to cause little grief to the American public was about to change, on March 25, 1947 “President Truman brought his anti-Communist war home to America… he put his signature Execute Order 9835 and launched the Federal Employees Loyalty Program, The most sweeping loyalty inquiry in the nation’s history” (Fariello 36). All aspects of the employees personal life was under the microscope now at the discretion of the government. This began the American Inquisition, or otherwise known as the Red Scare. This was just the beginning; it got worse when Eisenhower’s Executive Order 10450 came into play. This ordered a “mandated immediate suspension without pay for “any behavior, activities, or association which tends to show that the individual is not reliable or trustworthy” (Fariello 40). Now the burden of proof was put on the shoulders of the accused. They were also stripped of their protection to pleading the fifth, which allows them to not answer a question that
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may be seen as self incriminating. If they did plead the fifth it would have been like pleading guilty to the crime that they did not commit because Communism wasn’t so easy to defend against if the sole factor is suspicion. According to Samuel Stouffer of Harvard University in the 1940’s, 73 percent of the population would turn in their neighbors or acquaintance that they suspected to being Communist. It was clear to the eyes of people in the United States now. The enemy was not somewhere else in a far off place; it could have been your neighbors or even a family member. What pitted the American public against one another was the belief given to them by the media that communism had reached America and would ultimately undo the type of life they had come to love. In actuality it was the leaders of the time that where attacking the nation and creating a panic. As an effect the nation and its citizens were under control by the government for a short period, the citizen of the United States were now being controlled by hatred and fear which clouded their better judgment.
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A lot of the violence came from “American Racialist” where the involved with much of the acts during the Red Scare. “By 1919 American radicals had already engendered much suspicion and fear” (Murray 18) which led to the May Day riots, a series of violent demonstrations throughout Ohio against believed communist reds. During this event two were killed and left many severely injured.
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Essay 2 DRAFT - Cesar McFarlin WRT 205 Kathleen Founds 3-...

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