Vivian Gonzalez Mr. Martinez-Ramos A.P. United States History May 3, 2000 McCarthyism was one of the saddest events of American history. It destroyed people’s lives and shattered many families. It threw innocent people into a whirlwind of mass confusion and fictional portrayals of their lives. McCarthyism spawned for the country’s new found terror of Communism known as the red scare. McCarthyism was an extreme version of the red scare, a scare whose ends did not justify the means. The Red Scare happened twice in the history of this great country. When the communist took over Russia in 1919, the American people were unnerved. They were afraid of a communist take over in the states. When the First World War ended in 1918, there was still
Republican Wisconsin senator, Joseph R. McCarthy, was originally a quiet senator who was fairly unknown and had done nothing extraordinary previous to 1950. The senator changed all that when he delivered a speech in February 1950, in which he leveled allegations that the State Department employed numerous Communists. He claimed to possess a list of these Communist employees, although that list was never produced (Tindall, George Brown, and David Emory Shi). Senator McCarthy’s attempt to gain publicity with his outlandish accusations worked. Since the first Red Scare years before the fifties, many Americans continued to be terrified of Communists and their potential ability to corrupt and overrun America. Senator McCarthy played on these fears, and he continued to claim communism had infiltrated every aspect of America; politics, culture and all of American society. Because of the similarity of events from the first Red Scare, this time period of the early fifties in America is often called the second Red Scare. The second Red Scare in America’s history actually began in the late forties, previous to McCarthy’s emergence in 1950, and it continued on throughout the fifties lasting at least a dozen years (Storrs, Landon R. Y.) McCarthy’s short era during the second Red Scare actually lasted only four years, but because of his outspoken and arrogant persona, as well as his ability to inflict fear and persecution on innocent people, this entire span of time went down in the
Throughout the early 1950's, the nation was deeply engrossed in fears of a Communist takeover. At a time when America's fears were at their very height, Joseph McCarthy, a Republican Senator from Wisconsin pushed America's fears to an extreme. As a ploy to get himself re-elected, and to make America hate Communism as much as he did, the Senator devised a devious scheme. McCarthy, while giving a speech, held up a piece of paper and exclaimed, "I have here a list of 57 known Communists who are currently employed by the U.S. State Department" (Fried, 89). A few days later, McCarthy raised the number of people on the list from 57 to 205. The reaction to McCarthy's announcement was absolute panic. Until that time, the
Joseph Raymond McCarthy, once a senator, is best known for his accusatory remarks on communism. During a time of cold war, opposition to McCarthy was the last thing the public wanted, in fear of being accused themselves. McCarthy led a life of almost fifty years, beginning on November 14, 1908 and ending on May 2, 1957 due to acute hepatitis and numerous additional ailments and liver problems (Reference Staff).
During the late 1940s and early 1950s, the idea of communist subversion was becoming frighteningly real. These fears came to define–and, in some cases, corrode–the era’s political culture. For many Americans, the most enduring symbol of this “Red Scare” was Republican Senator Joseph P. McCarthy of Wisconsin. McCarthy spent almost five years trying in vain to expose communists and other left-wing “loyalty risks” in the U.S. government.In February 1950, appearing at the Ohio County Women’s Republican Club in Wheeling, West Virginia, McCarthy gave a speech that boosted him into the national spotlight. Waving a piece of paper in the air, he declared that he had a list of 205 known members of the Communist Party who were “working
If you were accused of associating with Communism in any way, you would automatically be a "threat" to America. These accusations caused innocent people to lose their jobs, friends, even put in jail, but most importantly their reputation would be tarnished - no matter how great it could have been before they were accused. Even if you were adamant that you were not a communist and there was no evidence, you would always be looked at differently. For example, Leonard Bernstein, a famous composer, fell under the FBI's watchful eyes for more than 30 years. He was targeted as a communist during the whole McCarthy era, even though he swore on an affidavit that "I am not now or at any time have ever been a member of the Communist Party." The FBI was never able to officially verify that he was a member of the Communist Party, but they continued to monitor his activities. This shows just how hesitant everyone was to believe an innocent one because of the mob hysteria having such an impact during that
Joseph McCarthy claimed that, “[the secretary of state] has lighted the spark which is resulting in a moral uprising and will end only when the whole sorry mess of twisted, warped thinkers are swept from the national scene so that we may have a new birth of national honesty and decency in government” (Communists in the State Department) . In the twenties and fifties, fear struck the hearts of many americans. They were afraid for their lives, liberty and their pursuits of happiness because they felt they were being threatened by outsiders, communists, anarchists, and many more. When mass hysteria took hold the country during the red scares of the 1920’s and the 1950’s, the citizens of the united states started thinking out of emotion instead
During the 1950s, the United States was a nation struggling with panic and paranoia. Following World War II, the democratic United States and the communist Soviet Union became engaged in a series of largely political and economic clashes known as the Cold War, which led to the time period being nicknamed; “The Cold War Era”. Elected officials from both major political parties sought to portray themselves as staunch anticommunists, and few people dared to pass judgment on the questionable tactics used to persecute suspected radicals. Americans felt the effects of the Red Scare on a personal level, and thousands of people saw their lives disrupted. They were hounded by law enforcement, alienated from friends and family and fired from their jobs.
During the late 1940’s and throughout the 1950’s, there was a great fear of Communism in America and abroad. The House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) was created in 1938 as a means to investigate and weed out Communists and Communist supporters from American society. Its first major attack was on the Hollywood film industry. Blacklisting of Hollywood writers, actors, producers, directors and others suspected of Communist affiliations began with the committee's hearings in October of 1947, and flourished throughout the 1950s. Senator Joseph
Throughout the 1940s and 1950s America was overwhelmed with concerns about the growing threat of communism in Eastern Europe and in China. One senator in particular, Joseph McCarthy took this one step further and made more than two-hundred accusations against these supposed communists, one of these people being Arthur Miller. Miller dared to stand against McCarthy and used The Crucible as a way to show McCarthy’s flaws without approaching him directly. The Salem Witch Trials and the Scares in the Mid Nineteen hundreds both remind us that no man is perfect, and we do make mistakes.
What appeared like an innocuous move in the forested areas, brought about the demise of twenty pure individuals. Nineteen were hung and the other one had his ribcage pulverized in. However, not every person who was charged kicked the bucket. Everybody who had been blamed had two conceivable options. These choices were to either concede and live with a harmed notoriety, or argue not liable and pass on a horrendous demise. On the off chance that one lived, their name would be demolished until the end of time. All individual regard would be lost alongside that of the group. On the off chance that one kicked the bucket, they would never again have the capacity to treasure the life that was given to them, yet their name would be everlastingly
The 1950’s was a time of paranoia in the United States - a time of suspicion and fear. The Cold War had just ended and U.S citizens were nervous for their government’s safety due to the fact that as soon as the war ended, China had become a Communist nation. One American in particular, Senator Joseph McCarthy allegedly believed that Communist spies were infiltrating the United States’ government. These claims resulted in Joseph McCarthy becoming a “hero” figure towards American citizens; the people believed anything he said. This led to McCarthy abusing his power and accusing citizens of un-American acts. Joseph McCarthy was a hypocrite to “Americanism” because he committed un-American activities such as McCarthyism, the Red Scare and Blacklisting.
3 – 3. Many historians feel that Harry Truman as much as Joe McCarthy gave force to the postwar “Red Scare.” Explain why you agree or disagree.“In 1950, fewer than 50,000 Americans out of a total US population of 150 million were members of the Communist Party” (Wall). Yet, in the 1940's and 1950's, an anti-Communist movement swept the country. Political leaders feared communist had infiltrated government, and some even claimed proof that confidential government documents were given away to communist countries. In response to the hysteria, Senator Joseph McCarthy helped intensify the movement and many had their lives turned inside out and ruined. Similarly, President Truman issued an executive order to flush out government employees spying for the USSR. While Senator McCarthy’s hearings as chair of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations and President Truman’s Federal Employees Loyalty Program added to
During the late 1940s, the lavender scare was a time of extreme injustice towards homosexuals in America. Homosexuals were being persecuted because they were thought to be a threat to American society. Homosexuals were being accused of disloyalty to the government, communism, and simply, affecting America’s values. This history of homophobia was driven by fear and reassurance of America’s predominant role in the world. Although American society has come a long way in aspect to justice for the LGBT community, it still falls short for complete equality. Because of this, it is important to be aware of the history of this community as it affected various homosexuals at the time.