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When one mentions the word "hippie" most think about the 1960s. They think about the flowing skirts and long unkempt hair. They cannot forget the LSD and marijuana usage either. The peace loving hippies were more than just happy stoners. They were young people who were redefining their thoughts on the issues of war. This generation of liberals brought about one of the most history defining social movements. The anti-war peace movement was one of the largest movements of its time. These hippies had strong feelings about the Vietnam War and its effects on the country. The people involved in this movement had various ways of showing their displeasure of the ongoing war in Vietnam. Protests, love-ins, music, and anti-war marches are just a few of the ways these hippies displayed their views.
According to 123helpme.com, Doctor Timothy Leary was one of the first prominent leaders in this hippie philosophy. He had a philosophy of life that people enjoyed very much to hear and learn about. He promoted gender equality, living life freely, and living like a God. He was famous for saying "Turn on, tune in, and drop out." The hippie movement became defined and substantial in 1965, and fizzled out by the early 1970s.
Arkit.com explains the views of these hippies. They were usually white Americans from the ages of fifteen to twenty five. They all had very liberal views. They criticized established institutions, rebelled against the middle class rules and most importantly, strongly opposed the Vietnam War. The ones who opposed the war used musical lyrics, psychedelic rock, and art to visualize their views.
A lot of folks believe that the hippies were just against everything and did not really stand for anything. They opposed so many things; it would be difficult to elaborate on them all. The peace movement that they partook in against the war seems to be the most important opposition. There were many protests that took place during the late 1960s that caused an uproar that would eventually help turn the war to peace in Vietnam.
The first protests happened on May 2nd, 1964. Students in different campuses did various things to show their disapproval of the ongoing war. According to an article found at hippy.com, one thousand students marched across Times Square in protest of America’s involvement in the Vietnamese government. In San Francisco, more than seven hundred students protested similarly along with many other smaller demonstrations in Boston, Madison, Wisconsin, and Seattle.
This was considered a small step in the anti-war movement, there were still millions of people who were uninformed about the war and the reasons it was taking place. These first protests were against using violence to achieve profits. These people were against using military forces to enforce rules and culture upon other countries.
Not only were hippies and young people against this war, there are also Vietnam veterans that spoke out against the war. The journal article found on bmswar.org is a speech written by Bob Muller and presented on July 23rd, 1971. Bob Muller is a retired first lieutenant of the Marine Corps. He spoke from a wheelchair due to a crippling injury during his fighting days in the Vietnamese War. He spoke of many things that only someone who fought first hand could describe.
He joined the Marines during his first years of college and during training; he had his heart and mind set on going to fight in the war. He stated that he never really thought about the reasons behind the war. He only knew that he wanted to fight and kill. He did not ask himself or anyone why this war was happening in the first place. He said that when he thinks back on this it chills his spine. He thought he was fighting to repel an invasion of the Vietnamese, he thought they were being attacked by a Northern Communist government. “I was for the liberation of anyone who wanted to be set free.”
He thought about the times when they were invading cities that certain people that needed to be apprehended were hiding in. There maybe were two or three people in this city that needed to be killed, but their instructions were to level the entire city. Two kill 2, they killed 150. This was not an isolated incident, it happened all the time. Bob Muller realized that the war was wrong, but he had hatred in his heart that kept him fighting until the day he was shot and released into military retirement. He realized that fighting for peace is not the correct way to handle things. The last thing he said during this heartfelt speech is that all that he had left was love, and that was all he needed.
Love, peace, freedom is three of the main aspirations of the anti-war movements. It seems as though if the people who were actually fighting this war realized it, it would not be long until everyone realized it. The next peace movement took place on January 14th, 1967 according to coldwar.org. In San Francisco California, the leaders of the counterculture staged a “human be-in” at the Golden Gates. This summer would soon be called the “Summer of Love.” Thousands of people gathered here together to promote peace, love, and happiness. This area became a place of gathering and life for the hippies of the generation.
During this summer of love, many festivals were born spreading the messages of peace and love. Music, poetry, and many other theatrical performances were able to spread the message to people of all ages and creeds. This time also showed a change in the movement. Some of the people involved in the movement became a little less about flower power and more about serious business.
One of the most recognized gatherings of peace would be the Woodstock concerts. Among many other concerts that took place all over the United States, Woodstock was probably the largest. Some of the strongest musical leaders of this movement played there music for over five hundred thousand people during three days of peace in August, 1969. Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and others gathered together sharing the same goals of peace, love, and happiness.
The truth of the matter is that no laws were passed and no bills went to congress from this movement. The true accomplishment of this movement was the spread of free will and liberalism. This movement sparked a free attitude among millions of people across the country that forever changed the face of America. This movement started as a small march in New York and grew to a fight across the country. People started standing up for what they believed in. No race or gender left behind. This peace movement was a small piece and timeframe compared to the other social movements of that era. From the peace spread by Martin Luther King Junior, to Kennedy’s liberal presidency, peace eventually won in my opinion.
Many persuasive strategies were used during the duration of this peace and love movement. There are pictures of hippies being surrounded by guns in their faces. Instead of using anger and hate to fight, they simply stick daisies into the guns. Pathos is used throughout every aspect of this movement. Those pictures show that these people cared so much about freedom and love; they were willing to die for it. The musical artists used pathos and logos. They had lyrics of the war and why it was so wrong. It was not logical to not ask questions about why this war was taking place and they showed it in their songs. The speech previously mentioned used Ethos for credibility. If a Marine Sergeant felt the war was wrong, a military official was against it, it is only logical and correct that the war was wrong. This officer fought long and hard in the war and he realized that it was not for the right reasons. He spoke up about it; his word was persuasive because he could explain what he went through. His emotion was obvious during his speech.
The Toulmin model can be described in this movement. The claim of the hippies was that the war was wrong, and there was no reason to force our cultures on other people. The data was all the rallies and speeches on why the war was wrong. They had good reasons as to why peace works better than violence. They used numerous persuasive tactics such as pathos, logos, and ethos to show the data. The hippies wanted everyone to just be happy and free. A concert such as Woodstock was a visible way for others to see what it felt like to live free. By showing others how to be free and happy, they set the perfect example without using violence to persuade people to act a certain way. They lived by example. The warrant of the model was that if everyone were to stop living violent lives and stop fighting for something they did not believe in, they could live a peaceful and happy life. They felt that if the Americans did not force their beliefs on others, the world would be a better place. Live and let live. They had peaceful ways of dealing with conflict, and they showed what a happy life one could live if they too joined in to the peace.
If I were growing up during this movement I definitely would have taken a stand. I would completely support this peace movement. Many tell me that I am a hippie of this day. I feel that people should join this movement because it is ridiculous to fight a war when no body knows what we are fighting for. This is true for the war in Iraq. I have no idea why we are there. I have no idea why my friend is over in Iraq as we speak. The government uses diversion tactics to make us forget about the War. They show everything else about the world besides the brave soldiers risking their lives overseas for only God knows what. I honestly believe that the people deserve to be informed about this war and what is happening with it.
I learned a lot about my mom and dad’s youth throughout this research. I can picture my mom and dad at those sit-ins protesting. They would never admit it if they were a part of it, but I would like to think that they were. I learned that if people stay strong and stand up for what they believe in, messages can be spread. People can be informed all over the world. Peace is imperative for the human race to survive. If people stopped resorting to violence to solve problems, life would be so much easier. People would be so much happier not having to worry about violence on every street corner. I hope that one day war will not exist.