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CHAPTER 31
New Frontiers: Political and Social Change In The 1960s
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I. Kennedy’s rise
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A. The election of 1960
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1. Backgrounds of the candidates
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2. The campaign
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a. Kennedy’s Catholicism not a problem
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b. Televised debates favor Kennedy
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c. The civil rights issue
3. Results
B. Kennedy’s administration
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1. Cabinet appointments emphasize youth
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2. The “Kennedy style“ displayed at the inauguration
II. The Kennedy record
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A. Congress Democratic but conservative
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B. Legislative successes
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1. The Peace Corps and the Alliance for Progress
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2. Trade Expansion Act
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3. Domestic social legislation
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C. The Warren Court on civil liberties
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D. Civil rights under Kennedy
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1. Kennedy at first hesitant to act
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2. Greensboro sit-ins
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a. Based on King’s “militant nonviolence“ philosophy
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b. Creation of SNCC
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3. Freedom riders
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4. Integration of the University of Mississippi
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5. King’s Letter from Birmingham City Jail
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6. Kennedy endorses civil rights
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7. Wallace’s defiant gesture
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8. March on Washington
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a. High point of movement
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b. King’s “I Have a Dream“ speech
9. Modest progress in cities such as Atlanta
III. Foreign frontiers
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A. Bay of Pigs disaster
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1. 1,500 anti-Castro Cubans prepared by CIA
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2. Failure of invasion
B. Berlin Wall
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1. Khrushchev threatens to limit access to Berlin
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2. Kennedy calls up Reserve and Guard units
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3. Soviets construct Berlin Wall
C. Cuban missile crisis
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1. Discovery of missiles in Cuba
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2. Kennedy imposes naval quarantine
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3. Khrushchev blinks
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4. Aftereffects
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a. Lowered tensions
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b. Sale of wheat
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c. Washington-Moscow “hot line“
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d. Removal of obsolete missiles
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e. Nuclear test ban treaty
D. Vietnam
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1. Neutrality for Laos
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2. Premier Ngo Dinh Diem
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a. Lack of economic and social reform
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b. Opposition to Diem
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c. Overthrow of Diem and later military regimes
IV. The end of Kennedy’s administration
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A. Assassination in Dallas
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B. Lee Harvey Oswald
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C. Jack Ruby
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D. Chief Justice Earl Warren
V. Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society
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A. Johnson’s background and style
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B. Passing Kennedy’s legislative program
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1. A major tax cut
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2. The Civil Rights Act of 1964
C. Declaring war on poverty
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1. Michael Harrington’s The Other America
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2. An economic-opportunity bill
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3. The Great Society
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D. The election of 1964
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1. Republicans
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a. Sought “a choice, not an echo“
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b. Nominated Barry Goldwater
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c. Goldwater’s weaknesses
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2. Johnson’s appeal for consensus
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3. Landslide victory for Johnson
E. Landmark legislation
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1. Medicare
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2. Federal aid to education
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3. Appalachian Regional Development Act
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4. Housing and Urban Development Act
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5. Immigration and Nationality Services Act
F. Assessing the Great Society
VI. From civil rights to black power
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A. Voting Rights Act of 1965
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B. Rise of the black power movement
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1. Riots in 1965 and 1966
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2. Condition of urban blacks
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3. Philosophy of the black power movement
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4. Malcolm X and other leaders
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5. Positive effects of the black power movement
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a. Helped African Americans take pride in their racial heritage
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b. Forced King and others to focus attention on plight of inner-city blacks
VII. The tragedy of Vietnam
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A. Efforts to avoid defeat
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1. Escalation
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2. The cost of the war
B. The Tonkin Gulf resolution
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1. Response to attack on American destroyers
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2. Johnson interprets as congressional approval for war
C. Escalation in 1965
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1. Attack at Pleiku
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2. Operation Rolling Thunder
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3. Combat troops to Vietnam
D. The context for policy
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
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1. Consistent with containment
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2. Goal of American involvement
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3. Erosion of support
E. The turning point
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1. The Tet offensive
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2. Further erosion of support
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3. Presidential primaries become referendums on Johnson’s Vietnam policy
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4. Johnson announces that he will not seek another term
VIII. Sixties crescendo
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A. Tragedies of 1968
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1. Assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.
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2. Assassination of Robert Kennedy
B. The election of 1968
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1. Democrats
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a. Nominate Hubert Humphrey
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b. The disastrous Chicago convention
2. Republicans
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a. Nominate Richard Nixon
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b. Represent stability and order
3. George Wallace
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a. Candidate of the American Independent party
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b. Appeal to social conservatives
4. Narrow victory for Nixon