Salem Witch Hunts vs Mccarthyism

953 Words4 Pages
SALEM WITCH HUNTS VS MCCARTHYISM The Salem Witch Hunts that occurred in 1692 had many similarities to the Red Scare known as McCarthyism that occurred in 1950’s. The Salem Witch trials began after one girl Abigail Williams along with her friends spread rumors of witchcraft. This caused panic and major disorder in the town of Salem. The Red Scare began after Senator Joseph McCarthy began accusing Americans of being communist, this caused chaos and hysteria across the United States. While these two events were decades apart they had many similarities. They both began from false accusations, both spread unnecessary panic, and both used fear to gain power. The Salem Witch Hunts were a cause of mass hysteria that came from accusations made by Abigail Williams, Betty Paris, Mercy Lewis, and Tituba. These girls were caught dancing in the woods and accused of being witches due to some of their peculiar behavior which included screaming, bending into awkward positions, and making strange sounds. To keep themselves out of trouble the girls said other women in the community were practicing witchcraft. The girls chose various names and for no particular reason on who they chose to blame for practicing witchcraft. Most of the accused were women, and to get them to confess to witchcraft different types of torture were used. No one came forward to defend these individuals and although they were innocent, often times the torture would be so immense they had no choice but to confess and say they were indeed a witch. The individuals who were accused had two options; one was to plead guilty and live a shameful life, or they could plead not guilty and die a horrible death. If they lived their name would be ruined, and they would no longer get any respect in the community. If they died, they would lose a life that could have been cherished and appreciated,

More about Salem Witch Hunts vs Mccarthyism

Open Document