Anyone accused of being a Communist (reasons included signing a petition, attending a protest, joining unions or private organizations, selling atomic secrets and being related to Communists) would be put on trial for a senate hearing. “By putting Communists on trial, the Truman administration shaped the American public’s view of domestic communism. It transformed party members from political dissidents into criminals-with all the implications that such associations inspired in a nation of law-abiding citizens” (Schrecker 27). The program tests federal employees and prohibits anyone associated with Communists within the government. The nation’s security is a example of Communism shown through agents like Alger Hiss, who brought before HUAC on charges of being Russian spy.
McCarthyism and the Red Scare After World War 2, the United States feared that communism will spread throughout the world, even hit the United States. Joseph McCarthy came up with an idea called McCarthyism. McCarthyism is a practice of making false accusations against Americans with ties to communism. During this era many American’s were being accused of being communist. Arthur Miller brought this idea to his own book called The Crucible.
Ku Klux Klan (KKK) is the name of several past and present secret domestic terrorist organizations in the United States, generally in the southern states, that are best known for advocating white supremacy and acting as vigilantes while hidden behind conical masks and white robes. The KKK has been known to utilize terrorism, violence, and lynching to intimidate and oppress African Americans, Jews, and Roman Catholics during periods of turmoil. The first Klan was founded in 1865 by veterans of the Confederate Army. Their main goal is to permute white supremacy in the aftermath of the American Civil War. The KKK quickly adopted violent methods.
In 1907, 1,200 government officials were murdered in political terrorist attacks by revolutionaries. Meaning that the revolutionary ideas and parties were still strong and threatening the government position. They tackled this problem by making the trial and punishment system harder and harsher. Stolypin (the Tsar Chief Minister) was the main man responsible for this, he met terror with terror by using field court Martials – these involve the armed forces deciding who’s guilty and what their punishments should be. Due to the stricter and tougher jury system 1,144 death sentences were handed out between October 1906
Eleven people were killed and the radicals were given a huge propaganda boost by referring to the event as ‘Peterloo’, in a grim analogy with the Duke of Wellington's famous victory over Napoleon at Waterloo four years earlier. This shows that the government did think Britain was on the verge of a revolution if they had to have authorities to disperse the crowd by force. This also shows the unrest Britain had as a whole, to the way Britain was governed. In response to the Duke of Wellington’s return to government, reform leaders made plans to bring the country to a halt by having their supporters withdraw funds from the banks, using the slogan: ‘To stop the Duke, go for Gold’. The crisis was averted.
Initially, President Herbert Hoover was attacked for being ill-advised and his apparent unsuccessful governance. Later, it became more evident that the worst part happened under the administration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. This is primarily because with the works done by the said two presidents, people behind the federal administration have intensified their destructive dominance. In short, an increased level of intervention was depicted with Hoover and later Roosevelt dictating their ways to key systems of the government including the nation’s economy. Roosevelt and his “new deal” era paved the way for the revolutionary conversion of the federal government and the country in general.
Schenck v. United States (1919) Facts of the Case: When America entered WWI, Congress passed the Espionage Act of 1917, which said that during wartime obstructing the draft and trying to make soldiers disloyal or disobedient were crimes. Charles Schenck, who served as general secretary of the Socialist Party, was vehemently against the war. He mailed thousands of pamphlets to men who had been drafted into the armed forces. These pamphlets said that the government had no right to send American citizens to other countries to kill people. As a result, the government charged Schenck with conspiracy to violate the Espionage Act by attempting to cause insubordination in the military and to obstruct recruitment.
In Bernabé (1970), he creates a character, the village lunatic, who physically and metaphorically marries La Tierra (the Earth) and thus reestablishes the Mayan reverence for it. In Zoot Suit and Bandido!, Valdez reexamines history from the Chicano and Mexican perspective. Thus Tiburcio Vasquez, whom history had portrayed as a mere bandit working the California countryside from 1850 to 1875, becomes in Bandido! a revolutionary bent on political rebellion. Zoot Suit retrieves for the American conscience an overlooked period of intense racism culminating in the Sleepy Lagoon murder trial and the riots that followed.
With this in mind, the common attitude in the United States was, as it continues to be today, that communism is evil manifest in a government. For this evil to manifest itself in a government that is supposedly of, for, and by the people, created a fear that the devil, or evil in general, had found its way into people in the United States. And, similar to Hale’s ideas in The Crucible, who better for this evil to envelope than those in the government? Those who govern the United States are supposed to be trusted to uphold the values for which this country stands. The evil, the communists, would have nothing to profit from infiltrating those who wielded no power.
McCarthyism in the 1950’s was the practice of broadcasting allegations of political treachery or rebellion with inadequate regard to evidence. The events that took place in the 1950’s concerning McCarthyism are what inspired Miller to write his play on the Salem witch trials of 1692. The fear of repeating the horrors of the past pushed him to try and open the eyes of those who seemed to be following a dangerous path. The Crucible and McCarthyism both contain instances of false accusation, wrongly gained power, and mass hysteria. Similarly to the Salem witch trials, McCarthyism started in a time of great fear, but instead of fearing witches that made pacts with the Devil, the people of the 1950’s feared communism.