Unformatted text preview: Veterans Day
To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nation. Woodrow Wilson, Issuing "Armistice Day" Proclamation, 1919 We have come to dedicate a portion of [this] field as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate. . .we cannot consecrate. . . we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. Abraham Lincoln, dedicating National Cemetery at Gettysburg, PA, 1863 Terms for the "Domestic Cold War" Consensus or Conformity? Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) Elvis Presley Alfred Kinsey Playboy Betty Friedan The Beat Poets The Rosenbergs HUAC Alger Hiss Sen. Joseph McCarthy "The Fifties" (19451960) "The Fifties" "The Fifties" Or was this "The Fifties"? Or this? Or this? Was this an Age of Consensus or Conformity? Consensus: Everyone was/is basically the same, we should all act like it Male dominated families and country Consumer luxuries the ultimate objective to life Ferret out and remove those who are different Conformity: Everyone is forced to act alike Creates intense tensions and pressures Paranoia: Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) Example #1: Youth Culture Ideal Youth Culture Heroes James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause Biker who may remember Marlon Brando participating in "take over" in The Wild One Mad Magazine, 1952 of Hollister, CA Greatest Youth Hero: Young Elvis Presley Example #2: Sexual Liberation Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1952) Playboy (1953) Alfred Kinsey Example #3: Feminism Betty Friedan The Feminine Mystique (1963) The American Dream morphs into the "American Way of Life" (e.g., consider growth of portion sizes for fast food) Example #4: Consumerism Modern Consumerism Home Ownership increased 50% (America already world leader in home ownership) Televisions Refrigerators, vacuums, radios, walltowall carpet, linoleum, etc. etc. <7,000 in 1946 >50,000,000 by 1960 Advertising revenues increase by 1000% Credit purchasing increases by 800% Suburbanization Suburbs grow 600% faster than cities Suburban population exceeds urban population by 1970 Is this the measure of "making it" in America? The "Beats" 1. 1. 2. Consensus exists, but largely in reaction to events Conclusions 2. 3. 1. Individualism largely rejected in the "fifties" (The Man in the Grey Flannel Suit, the "in" crowd, etc.) 2. Normative behaviors: sex, youth, music, consumerism Conformity exists, but Americans "vote" through their behavior Social pressures build Fear of communism and nuclear exchange Nostalgia: Fear of "lost values" (values that had not been in evidence for 40+years) 4. 1. Are the "fifties" one of the most unAmerican of modern eras? All of the above is directly contrary to "typical" American behavior (1910s2000s) The Price of Being "UnAmerican" Understanding the historical narrative is critical to understanding U.S. Red Scare NO RED SCARE IN WESTERN EUROPE Starts with a practical problem (in the Age of the Abomb) : Are certain American citizens willing to aid the Soviet Union at the expense of the U.S.? PostWWII shift against USSR a "shock to the system" Americans have the right to BELIEVE what they want to believe They do not have the right to endanger others by those beliefs Second Red Scare, 19451954 Great Depression supports radical reform (many convinced war only TEMPORARILY solves economic woes) US supports USSR during WWII ProSoviet activists drawn into administration Clearly, in 1945, Soviet "sympathizers" exist in the U.S. government, but would they aid the USSR at the expense of the U.S.? we know this, makes defense more meaningful and important Scientifically, the "secrets" lost could be easily discovered by Soviet physicists (i.e., the scientific method works!) Great Depression and WWII service Some were members of SPA or Communist Party of America Active campaign by USSR to spy, especially "secrets" of the nuclear device 1. Practical Problems Alger Hiss (1950) Julius and Ethyl Rosenberg (1950) Guilty of passing secrets in 1930s Lies under oath perjury British spy Klaus Fuchs passing secrets to USSR FBI wants to find any leaks in U.S. Fuchs names David Greenglass (Ethyl's brother) Greenglass fingers Julius & Ethyl Tried under 1917 Espionage Act! Convicted, sentenced to death Most thought they would not be executed. But they: Executed 1953 Refuse to confess Refuse to name others 2. Problems of Exaggeration J. Robert Oppenheimer HUAC How much dissent is U.S. willing to allow? How much does the Constitution allow? "Father" of American Atomic Bomb J. Robert Oppenheimer Moral objections to development of Hydrogen bomb and policy of "Mutual Assured Destruction" (MAD) Agree or disagree, one can see why a conscientious person might object (and still be a loyal American) Oppenheimer's wife once married to a Spanish Communist (1932), brother once member CPA Oppenheimer member of humanitarian group, "Friends of Chinese People" (early 1930s); China a close ally of U.S. until 1948. Oppenheimer opposed rapid development of larger nukes, demanded some U.S. policy to limit nuclear proliferation 1953 investigation found: Barred from scientific research and scholarships at Institute for Advanced Studies (physics) When asked by his friend George Kennan why he didn't simple leave the U.S. for welcoming research centers in Europe, Oppenheimer replied "Because, damn it, I happen to love THIS country." HUAC (1947) "Communism" in Hollywood
"Communism" in Hollywood FBI and Screen Actors Guild (SAG) wants to purge lefties, charges "Soviet influence" (like yelling "fire" in a crowded room) HUAC intimidates witnesses during Great Depression Hollywood made proNew Deal films/propaganda during WWII, Hollywood injected pro Soviet sentiments (they were our ally!) Many writers, actors, and directors favor more dramatic political action during Great Depression Joined SPA or CPA in 1930s (neither illegal) House then subpoenas the "The Hollywood Ten" Refuse to testify Refuse to name others Claim 1st & 5th Amendment rights Jailed in 1950 Humphrey Bogart, Edward G. Robinson humiliated Charlie Chaplin refused reentry in U.S. Hundreds testify, name others scores blacklisted Journalists: Hedda Hopper, Victor Reisel, Whittaker Chambers Rep. Richard M. Nixon, CA (R) Rep 3. Problems of Political Opportunism Sen. Joseph McCarthy, WI (R) "McCarthyism" 1950 Wheeling W.VA Tensions of Abomb, China, Korea Badger people into confessions or naming names McCarthy doubts: Finds ZERO communists in U.S. government Geo. C. Marshall, Eisenhower, U.S. Army!! Someone then "leaks" that McCarthy sought favorable treatment for his aide: David Shine Ruins scores of lives for his political ambitions ArmyMcCarthy Hearings (1954) Defense Atty. Joseph Welch Senate censure December, 1954 Sen. Stuart Symington, MO (D) to McCarthy: "The American people have had a look at you for six weeks. You are not fooling anyone." 1. Impossible to read or eradicate thoughts Creates intense social pressures within the U.S.
1. Unlike Nativism/Racism, Anti Communism attacked an idea Conclusions Seeking to defend America, Red baiters nearly destroyed the Constitutional protections that created this country Why did most Americans not protest Conclusions sooner and louder? Once again, the "witch hunts" showed that AntiCommunism explained away the frustrations of the Cold War; such a thing is a very powerful political force (post 9/11/01?) the Fifties to be an era of greater conformity, not consensus, and at odds with the rest of U.S. history The children of this generation (baby boomers) would "return to normalcy" with a vengeance in the 1960s! ...
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