The Ineffectiveness of The Protest Movement of the 1960s

Essay by diavola8University, Bachelor'sA, December 2002

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The 1960s Protest Movement was a group of spoiled, naïve, utopian radical students that accomplished nothing. The majority of the protesters were wealthy college students who were not going to be drafted. Their propaganda made the Vietnam veterans into the enemy. Many of their statements were foolish and damaged people's opinion of the movement. They did not help end the war and they did not change many peoples opinion of the war.

The draft was a large target of antiwar protesting during the protest movement. Many protesters burned their draft cards and demonstrations attempted to shut down draft offices. The government had a policy of student deferment, which allowed young men who were enrolled in a university to be exempt from the draft. The result of the deferment was that the less privileged members of society, who could not afford to go to college, had to do the fighting and the dying.

"White middle class students went to classes at nice ivy covered campuses, while slum dwellers, working class youths, blacks, and Chicanos went off to the jungles of Vietnam" (Unger 91-92). The vast majority of the members of the antiwar movement were college students, who were exempt from the draft and knew they would not have to go fight and possibly die for their country. They encouraged those who were drafted to dodge the draft, and not go to war. Dodging the draft used to be a shameful thing to do, but during the Vietnam War to dodge the draft "became an ethical, moral thing to do - a badge of courage - while those who enlisted were somehow considered morally inferior. Stupid. Suckers" (Burkett and Whitley 53). This was one of the few accomplishments of the antiwar movement. They made it acceptable to skip the draft and shameful...