Monday, April 25, 2016

A TO Z CHALLENGE "U" FOR UNREST IN THE 50s

 
Everything about the 1950s was not fabulous. World War II had ended, and the veterans returned home, which was good. The Cold War began almost immediately after WWII, however, and lasted through most of the 20th century. The Cold War  was the continuing state of political conflict, military tension, and economic competition between the Soviet Union and its satellite states, and the powers of the Western world, led by the United States. Although the primary participants' military forces never officially clashed directly, they expressed the conflict through military coalitions, strategic conventional force deployments, a nuclear arms race and the space race.

Then followed the Korean War, from June 25, 1950 until the Armistice Agreement was signed on July 27, 1953.

The Vietnam War known as the Second Indochina War and known in Vietnam as Resistance War Against America occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from November 1, 1955 to April 30, 1975. This war was fought between North Vietnam—supported by the Soviet Union, China and other communist allies—and the government of South Vietnam—supported by the United States, Philippines and other anti-communist allies.

The overthrow of Fulgencio Batista by Fidel Castro, Che Guevara  and other forces in 1959 resulted in the creation of the first communist government in the western hemisphere. The Cuban Missile Crisis  of 1962 led to a confrontation between the United States, Cuba, and the Soviet Union.

During these wars, the U. S. had the draft, so many young men found themselves in the middle of battle barely out of h high school.

Enough of wars. But you can see how they affected people's lives. How about a witch hunt?

The Cold War era seemed to encourage witch hunts, and comics found themselves blamed for the alarming increase in juvenile delinquency and other social ills. In 1948, American children across the country piled their comic book collections in schoolyards, and, encouraged by parents, teachers, and clergymen, set them ablaze. In the same year, the media began attacking comic books. John Mason Brown of the Saturday Review of Literature described comics as the "marijuana of the nursery; the bane of the bassinet; the horror of the house; the curse of kids, and a threat to the future.

The Supreme Court ruling of Brown vs. the Board of Education in 1954 was a landmark case in the civil rights movement. In the early 1950s the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States opened the door to the beginnings of the right for all Americans to an equal and fair education regardless of race, creed or religion. During this time, racial segregation was still present in the U.S. and other countries. The Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s would soon begin.

Sputnik I was launched in 1957. The U.S. then launched Explorer I three months later, beginning the space race.

In thinking of the 1950s as a historic era, it was a period of prosperity, but also with considerable turmoil and changes occurring.

Okay, you've had your history lesson for the day.

Happy Reading.

13 comments:

  1. Yes, everyone thinks of the 50s as some magical time, but there were really a lot of crazy-scary things going on during that era.

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    1. You're so right, Stephanie. We tend to forget the bad stuff and just look at the good. Maybe it's best that way.

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  2. We do have an image of family wholeness, but the country itself experienced a lot of upheaval.

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    1. It was a good era for families, Diane. Jobs were available. People bought new homes. The wars really weren't in the minds of most of us, unless we had family members or friends involved in them.

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  3. Wasn't McCarthyism during that time? That was certainly a big witch hunt.

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    1. Yes, it was, Alex. On February 9, 1950, McCarthy proclaimed that he was aware of 205 card-carrying members of the Communist Party who worked for the United States Department of State. And that wasn't the all of it.

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  4. So much for the good old days! Every decade seems to come up with its new unrest, and it seems that unrest becomes increasingly violent. Or maybe it's just that while I'm living it, it seems worse than the old ones. Great post today, Beverly!

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    1. So true, Lee. I tend to overlook the bad stuff. Thanks for stopping by. I wonder what future generations will remember about these times.

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  5. Yep, when nostalgia kicks in no one remembers all the fear mongering and such of any era it seems

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    1. Exactly, Pat. It's easier to remember the good and forget the bad.

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  6. Yes Beverly, the 50's certainly had their fair of unrest. Great post.
    Yvonne.

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    1. Thanks, Yvonne. It seems like every generation has the and the good times. Have a lovely week.

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  7. People my age usually see the '60s as a major time of unrest, but the '50s had just as much going on.

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