This essay Sixties has a total of 1950 words and 10 pages.
In 1962, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said his most famous words: "I
have a dream." He was not the only one who felt this way. For many, the
1960s was a decade in which their dreams about America might be fulfilled. For
Martin Luther King Jr., this was a dream of a truly equal America; for John F.
Kennedy, it was a dream of a young vigorous nation that would put a man on the
moon; and for the hippy movement, it was one of love, peace, and freedom. The
1960s was a tumultuous decade of social and political upheaval. We are still
confronting many social issues that were addressed in the 1960s today. In spite
of the turmoil, there were some positive results, such as the civil rights
revolution. However, many outcomes were negative: student antiwar protest
movements, political assassinations, and ghetto riots excited American people
and resulted in a lack of respect for authority and the law. The first president
during the 1960s was John F. Kennedy. He was young, appealing, and had a
carefully crafted public image that barely won him the election. Because former
President Eisenhower supported the Republican nominee, Richard Nixon, and
because many had doubts about Kennedy\'s youth and Catholic religion, Kennedy
only received three-tenths of one percent more of the popular vote than Nixon.
The first thing Kennedy did during his brief presidency was to try to restore
the nation\'s economy. Economic growth was slow in 1961 when Kennedy entered the
White house. The President initiated a series of tariff negotiations to
stimulate exports and proposed a federal tax cut to help the economy internally.
John F. Kennedy was known as one of the few presidents in history who made his
own personality a significant part of his presidency and a focus of national
attention. Nothing illustrated this more clearly than the reaction to the
tragedy of November 22, 1963. Kennedy was driving through the streets of Dallas.
The streets were full of cheering people watching him drive by. The President
was surrounded by loud motorcycles driven by the Secret Service. One onlooker,
looking into a sixth floor window, noticed another man with a rifle. "Boy!
," he said. "You sure can\'t say the Secret Service isn\'t on the ball.
Look at that guy up there in the window with a rifle" (Pett 12). That man
with the rifle was not a member of the Secret Service. A fraction of a second
before 12:30 p.m., John Fitzgerald Kennedy was smiling broadly. He would never
smile again. The Kennedy assassination touched everyone around the world. In
Canada, for example, Eaton\'s Company put full-page advertisements in newspapers
such as The Hamilton Spectator saying, "With all Canada and the World, we
share the shock and grief inflicted by the tragic death of a great statesman and
a great hero" (see appendix A). Nevertheless, there was one good thing that
came out of it: Lyndon B. Johnson became president. Throughout Johnson\'s
five-year career, sweeping reforms were made in every corner of the country.
First, Johnson created Medicare-- a program to provide federal aid to the
elderly for medical expenses. Medicare had been debated for years in Congress,
but Johnson\'s plan eliminated many objections. First, Medicare benefits were
available to all elderly Americans, regardless of need. Second, doctors serving
Medicare patients could practice privately and even charge their normal fees.
Later, the Johnson Administration issued Medicaid, which gave assistance to all
ages. Next, Johnson established a new cabinet agency in 1966: the Department of
Housing and Urban Development. This agency, together with the newly formed Model
Cities program, was invented in an effort to stop the decaying of cities and end
poverty. Also, the Omnibus Housing Act gave rent supplements to the poor.
Finally, Johnson created the Office for Economic Opportunity. This program led
to new educational, employment, housing, and health-care developments. However,
the Office for Economic Opportunity failed because there was inadequate funding
and the government was more concerned with the Vietnam War. Johnson also wanted
to strengthen the country\'s schools. First, his administration implemented the
Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, which extended aid to private
and parochial schools based on the needs of the students. Also, he created the
National Endowment of Arts and Humanities, and passed the Higher Education Act,
which gave federally financed scholarships. Another subject that concerned the
government under Lyndon B. Johnson Administration and the rest of America was
Civil Rights. In 1964 Congress passed the Civil Rights Act, and in 1965 they
passed the Voting Rights act. The Civil Rights Movement did not just affect
American minorities, but everyone who lived in
Topics Related to Sixties
Counterculture of the 1960s, African-American Civil Rights Movement, Community organizing, Vice Presidents of the United States, Kennedy family, Martin Luther King Jr., Lyndon B. Johnson, John F. Kennedy, Civil Rights Act, Civil rights movements, I Have a Dream, Civil and political rights
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