Popular in American History since 1865
Popular in History
This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lindley on Wednesday November 18, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to History 1020 at Clemson University taught by Rod Andrew in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 15 views. For similar materials see American History since 1865 in History at Clemson University.
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Date Created: 11/18/15
10-29 Civil Rights Movement • After WWII, U.S. was glad they won war over fascism, Nazism, etc. but soon enough, in another fight w/ communism • Second Red Scare (1948-1960) – period of anti-radical hysteria, anti-communist sentiment Fear and suspicion post-WWII, 3 things led to this atmosphere… • China “fell to communism” in 1949 − Seemed like U.S. did nothing to stop this • Soviet Union successfully tested an atomic bomb − Alger Hiss (official in state department, communist spy, convicted of perjury) − Klaus Fuchs (British scientist, convicted for selling atomic secrets to Russia) − Julia and Ethel Rosenberg (American scientists, convicted of selling atomic secrets, executed) • Senator Joseph McCarthy claimed he had a list of communists working in the state department (1950) − Very powerful, people were scared to challenge him b/c he’d label them communists − Went too far in 1954 w/ investigation of communists in the military (Army McCarthy hearings) • By 1950, more people were speaking out against segregation but most had no idea Jim • Crow would come crashing down in their lifetime • There were several underlying factors working to undermine segregation… 1. International system – worldwide, capitalism and democracy competing w/ communism (and democracy stood for human equality) 2. Racial tension was bad for business (drives new industries away) 3. Assumption that one race was superior to another had lost a lot of credibility, by mid- 20 century most intellectuals that it was false 4. Holocaust – Hitler made the idea of racial superiority seem foolish and disgusting 5. Civil Rights came to be seen as a moral issue not just a political issue 6. Television (everyone could see, more of an impact) 7. Increased political and economic clout of blacks (elected politicians, more buying power) 8. Black initiative on a widespread scale (no longer a few activists, grass roots activism) • Several executive orders w/ Truman, Eisenhower (R) was elected in 1952 • Brown v. Board (1954) – kicks off modern civil rights movement − Several similar cases (Briggs v. Elliott) − Overturned Plessy v. Ferguson (1890) − Separate but equal was unconstitutional in the field of education − Eisenhower disagreed, had no problem w/ social separation of race and w/o executive support, there was no power • “Massive resistance” (Sen. Henry Byrd) in the Southern states at the time, gov’t needs to force this issue • Montgomery bus boycott (1955) – Rosa Parks was told to move to back and she refused − Great symbol, Parks was working class but had middle class respectability − Met in church to celebrate and decided to extend the boycott − Also selected Martin Luther King Jr. to lead the movement − Dragged on for 13 months, lots of downtown businesses were boycotted, lots of persecution of black and white followers (Ralph Albernathy, house was bombed) − Lots of white sympathy (white lawyers lost clients, house wives picked up slaves) − 1957, ended all segregation on city buses • 3 broader reasons why boycott was important… 1. Showed movement was becoming a grass roots movement 2. Made MLK Jr. a nationally known figure 3. Brought more national attention to civil rights issue MLK Jr. – • Father was a minister in ATL, Morehouse College/masters/doctorate from Boston University • Influenced by tactics of non-violent resistance − Influenced by Gandhi and Reinhold Niebuhr (Protestant clergyman, social change wouldn’t come about through appeals to economics and reasons but their conscience) • Founded Southern Christian Leadership Conference (1957) • Based demands on Christianity and morality • Integration of Central High in Little Rock (1957) − 9 black students wanted to attend, Gov. of Arkansas (Orval Faubus) called national guard to keep students out − President Eisenhower called in troopers and federalized the Arkansas national guard, stayed there the rest of the school year • SNCC (Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee) − Mostly college students, very polite and didn’t retaliate − Instituted tactic of sit-ins (Greensboro sit-in, 1960), pray-ins, and jail-ins − Left out by SCLC and became bitter/radical • CORE (Congress on Racial Equality) − Smaller, based in the North − In 1961, started organizing freedom rides (chartered an integrated bus and went to deep South to show segregation case not being respected) − U.S. Marshalls had to be sent in to protect riders • Integration of Ole Miss (October 1962) − James Meredith − Riots broke out, 2 killed, troops sent in • Harvey Gant (January 1963, first black student at Clemson) • Birmingham Campaign (1963) − MLK targeted Birmingham for a big campaign − “Bull” Commer (police chief) eventually snapped, had them blasted w/ fire hoses and police dogs − Huge publicity boost − MLK was arrested, “Letter from Birmingham Jail” − Later that year, a bomb went off in a black church and 4 little girls were killed • President Kennedy got on TV and announced that segregation and civil rights were moral issues − Started initiating major piece of civil rights legislation and was going to send it to Congress − Medgar Evars (head of NAACP) was assassinated in his front yard after Kennedy spoke on TV • March on Washington (August 28, 1963) − “I have a dream speech” • Filibuster of Civil Rights Bill led by Strom Thurmond, Kennedy assassinated − Became psychologically impossible to oppose legislation that Kennedy sponsored • All of these events represent white extreme reactions, by mid to late 60’s segregation wasn’t important enough to justify violence − There were, however, riots, murders, and deep humiliation (lots of insult and mistreatment) − South’s leaders gave up on segregation only when their only remaining choice was outright violence 4 major things that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 did: 1. Banned segregation in public accommodations and facilities 2. Set up EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunities Commission) which aimed to stop discrimination in employment based on race, sex, religion, or national origin 3. Required states to apply equal procedures in voter registration and elections 4. Forbade discrimination in any program that had federal assistance − Mississippi Summer Project, freedom vote (voter registration effort) − Voting Rights Act of 1965 − Allowed attorney general to send voting examiners to supervise voter registration and elections − Targeted states and counties w/ history of literacy tests, poll taxes, etc. − Percentage of black voters skyrocketed − Congress could renew every 10 years b/c of clause