Vietnam War Protests Facts

Vietnam War Protests Facts
Vietnam War protests took place primarily during the late 1960s and early 1970s in the United States and were part of the larger "Counter Culture" movement that was taking place at the time. Although the core of the protests took place in the United States, large protests also happened in Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and West Germany. Australia, which had sent a limited number of combat troops to Vietnam in support of the Americans, was also scene of numerous anti-war protests. Most of the anti-war activity was driven by the political Left, often emanating from college campuses. The organization Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) organized many of the college protests, which often began turning violent by 1968. The 1968 Democratic Presidential Convention in Chicago became the scene of violent anti-war protests, which was followed by other violent protests around the country. As the Vietnam War began winding down in the early 1970s, so too did the anti-war protests. The more radical elements broke off and formed violent Marxist-communist organizations such as the Weather Underground, which initiated a terror campaign until the late 1970s.
Interesting Vietnam War Protests Facts:
The first document anti-Vietnam War protest in America took place in 1945. The protest was done by Merchant Marine sailors who were protesting the government using their ships to transport French soldiers to the Indochina War.
November 15, 1969 was the date of the largest anti-war demonstration in American history. More than 500,000 people arrived in Washington, D.C. to protest the war and several smaller protests were held on that day across the country.
SDS was founded in 1960 on the campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Tom Hayden, who would later become a California state senator and was married to Jane Fonda for several years, helped formulate much of SDS's ideology.
Pediatrician and "celebrity doctor" Benjamin Spock vocally opposed the Vietnam War and supported war protesters. Spock's positions gave the anti-war movement legitimacy in the eyes of many mainstream Americans.
Spock was convicted of conspiring to abet resistance to the draft in 1968 and sentence to two years in prison, although he remained free on appeal and the conviction was later overturned on appeal.
People in the anti-war movement were often active in other social justice movements of the era, as they often are today. For example, Martin Luther King Junior primarily focused his attention on desegregation and voting rights in the south early in his career, but by the late 1960s began advocating for the labor and anti-war movements.
Although many of the more conservative churches in America, some of the younger clergy in some branches opposed it. Roman Catholic priests were often divided on the issue, while many leaders of the Episcopal Church participated in anti-war protests around the country.
Many Vietnam War veterans joined the protest movement by the late 1960s. Veterans Against the War was one of the more notable veteran anti-war groups and Ron Kovic was one of the most notable veteran anti-war leaders.


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