Students Protest Against the Vietnam War

1327 Words6 Pages
The students started one of the largest youth movements in the United States where they finally stood up against the “establishment” and broke their parents’ expectations of conformity. This counter-culture represented one of the most vocal groups of the anti-war movement against the Vietnam War, despite its small percentage. Their parents looked down on their newfound attitude that welcomed rock n’ roll, pre-marital sex, and drugs amongst other controversies. Current events included upheaval over social and civil rights, and looming nuclear threats from the Soviet Union. Their parents pushed for tradition in the form of religion, marriage, and the patriotic duty of fighting for ones’ country. Youths responded in protest by organizing marches and burning draft cards, which caused a chain reaction among campuses. Student attitudes and ideals conflicted with their parents’, due to the natural tendency to rebel and other events that marked the sixties, which caused them to question authority much more than their parents did.
While it is completely normal for the youth generation to rebel, it seemed as though the coming-of-age baby boomer generation had a lot more to rebel about. Throughout the sixties and into the seventies, “the issues of the student protest movements range from racial discriminations, the war on poverty, and the war in Vietnam, to particular policies of the universities.” Student protests against the Vietnam War was fueled in part by the desire to be independent from obligation. “Obligation,” as in the obligation to go to war just because the government said so, the obligation to do what their parents did, and the obligation to not question authority. Many students—and many Americans in general—were unsure abo...

... middle of paper ...

...erome. “Student Protest.” American Association of University Professors 55, no. 3 (Sept., 1969):309-326. Accessed April 21, 2014.
"The Aftermath of Kent State." The Washington Post, Times Herald (1959-1973), May 06, 1970. Accessed April 22, 2014.
Thistlewaite, Donald L. “The Impact of the episodes of May 1970.” Research in Higher Education 1, no.3 (1973):225-243. Accessed April 23, 2014.
Vaughn, Robert V. “Protestation and the Elders.” American Libraries 1, no. 2 (Feb., 1970):112-113. Accessed May 22, 2014.
"Vietnam Protesters Plan Drive to Avoid the Draft." New York Times (1923-Current File), Oct 18, 1965. Accessed April 23, 2014.
Open Document