Student Name: Ashley Helton
Instructors Name: Karen Lewis
Course Title: History 105
Date: May 25, 2012
In this essay I will go into detail explaining two major historical turning points that occurred during the period of World War II through the 1970s, and the effect they had on today’s society, economy, politics and culture. I will also give you two reasons why Americans in the late 1930s wanted to remain out of the European conflict. I will tell you about the role that women played to help win World War II. I will describe two civil rights breakthroughs that occurred after World War II that moved the cause of African Americans forward. I will explain two ways in which the Vietnam War brought political awareness to a new generation of young Americans. Last but not least I will tell you about two programs that President Johnson’s “Great Society” agenda had put into effect and that are still into effect today.
The first of two major historical turning points that occurred during the World War II through the 1970s was the Watergate Scandal. The Watergate Scandal is known for its complex web of serious political scandals that occurred during 1972 and 1974. At the time Richard M. Nixon was President, this scandal would change his life and the lives of many people involved as well as the Americans view of political leaders. Many things were found out during the long investigation including the unveiling that President Nixon was taping all the conversations in the White House. Also Nixon’s vice president Agnew was also admitted to tax evasion. There was also many other things that came to light during the Watergate Scandal leading Americans to have major distrust within the entire leaders of our country. Today political leaders and everyone for that matter grasp the idea that no one is above the law. I believe the biggest outcome of the Watergate Scandal would be the realization that the “freedom of press” defined in the First Amendment can be held up and used to print and report on if the information is true. Due to the problems that arose another act was set into place to somewhat keep the president’s power in check; known as the War Powers Resolution of 1973. This act made it so the president himself could not send armed forces such as the Army, Navy, and Marines into combat abroad without the consent of the congress. The second of two major historical turning points that I believe happened was the Vietnam War. While Vietnam started in 1955 the United States did not enter until roughly 1961. America wanted to remain out of this war but ultimately succumb to the realization that we must intervene if we did not want communism to spread any farther than it already had. Still today known for its dramatic bloodshed with the losses of so many lives and also for the fact that to date is the only war that the United States lost due to the U.S. withdrawing from the war. Today we can see the effects of the war economically because all of the health problems we see in the veterans of the war. We help to pay for the medical bills of proud men that served our country during that time. Our veterans today still suffer greatly from port traumatic stress disorder and drug dependencies. The war was also very costly not in just that thousands of lives were lost but also financially.
The people of the United States had many reason as to why the wished to stay neutral in what became World War II. First from my understanding Americans were still trying to recover from World War I and also the Great Depression. America suffered from so many devastating blows financially during the Great Depression. They felt as if we should concentrate on recovering here at home first rather than going overseas and incurring more financial problems. The second reason I think Americans wanted to remain out of the European Conflict is because of a man named Adolf Hitler. Although...