In 1964 President Lyndon Johnson used carefully crafted misstatements to get the U.S. more deeply involved in the Vietnam conflict. By 1968 the War in Vietnam was a major point of debate and conflict with American citizens. President Richard Nixon pulled out of Vietnam in 1972, after serious criticism for the Kent State mishap.
Some presidents have tried to avoid war, others jump headlong into war against the best advice.
In 1968, young Americans in large numbers were dropping out of the “establishment” and forming alternative lifestyle communities. Called Hippies, these young people called for peace, and their most famous gathering spot was a corner in San Francisco, Haight and Ashbury. They protested the war with slogans like "Peace, Love, and Flower Power," and "Make Love not War."
Hippies, parents, veterans and students protested the War in Vietnam with posters, marches, and civil disobedience. The classic image of hippies putting flowers in the rifles of the National Guard . . . shows the friendlier side of the protest.
In 1968 students at Columbia University took over the administration building and closed down the university as a war protest. In 1970, as students on the campus of Kent State University protested President Nixon's increased war effort, the Ohio National Guard was called out and sadly fired live ammunition into the crowd, killing 4 students.
Protests against unprovoked war still take to the streets to raise awareness and hopefully make a difference.
~ Timothy Mullin