Civil Rights - 1961-1968 - and the Role of the Presidents

Outlines the roles of JFK and LBJ in advancing civil rights in the USA.

HideShow resource information
Preview of Civil Rights - 1961-1968 - and the Role of the Presidents

First 592 words of the document:

History Civil Rights: 1961-1968 Role of the Presidents
The Kennedy & Johnson Years
The Kennedy Years = 1961-1963
Cold War Context
Khrushchev was engaging in provocative tactics and preaching: "Peaceful co-existence".
Bay of Pigs in 1961, followed by Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 ­ ICBMs in striking dist.
Vietnam was getting more worrisome every day.
US assistance in Laos ­ assisted a Laotian dictator come to power to avoid Commies.
Berlin Wall Crisis in 1961 ­ East & West Berlin cut off.
U2 Spy Incident ­ US spy plane shot down over Moscow.
How Kennedy helped Black people
Kennedy was slow to act because he had a small mandate and didn't want to upset the
Southern congressmen.
He used many symbolic actions, like Truman. For instance, Kennedy appointed 40 blacks to
top positions in the Civil Service and he chose 5 black federal judges, inc. Thurgood
Robert Kennedy was appointed Attorney-General. RK believed in the CRM and supported
them whenever possible. E.g. Meredith incident.
57 suits were brought against illegal violations of black voting rights in the South,
compared to 6 under Ei. He invited more black leaders to the White House than any
Kennedy resigned from an exclusive club that refused to admit blacks.
Kennedy forced the Washington Redskins to allow black men into their football (American)
Used an Executive Order to create the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunities
Commission). It aimed to ensure equal opportunities for all Federal employees and in
companies with government contracts. FAIL.
When His Hand Was Forced
Freedom Rides (1961): white racists garnered national attention. Ke was reluctant to
intervene. Federal Marshals were sent in to help. When this failed (racists bombed a black
church) Ke pressured the Alabama Governor to call out the NG and state troopers. Results:
ICC ruling that supported the SC rulings in 1946 and 1960.
Voter Registration (1961): racists attacked would-be voters in Mississippi. RK spoke out,
but claimed federal intervention could only occur if there was a total breakdown of law and
order. Results: Alienated black voters and increased black militancy.
James Meredith Incident (1962): Used GI Bill of Rights (see Tr&Ei factsheet) to get into
uni. Uni rejected him. NAACP supported Meredith. SC ruled in his favour. RK had to send 500
marshals to assist and help him enrol. NG and US army had to be sent in when it got too
violent. Results: Meredith finally enrolled. He inspired other blacks to do likewise.
Integration in Alabama (1963): last state to integrate universities. Ke sent in federal
troops, marshals and a federalised NG. Governor Wallace tried to resist (to gain white
vote) and then gave in. Results: Ke publically spoke out against black inequality calling it
"immoral". Citing to the Bible and Constitution.
Birmingham (1963): When Bull Connor turned hoses on students. Ke said the images
sickened him. RK sent in Justice Department (JD) reps. Results: Deseg soon occurred.
March on Washgton (1963): Ke opposed the March fearing for his CR bill. Eventually
endorsed it and tried to keep it integrated and peaceful. Results: helped get CR bill through.
Civil Rights Bill (1963): moderate attempt to end segregation in public places, to help
blacks use their vote, and to help black workers. Became an act after Ke dead.
*Ke refers to Kennedy
*Tr + Ei refers to Truman and Eisenhower

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

History Civil Rights: 1961-1968 Role of the Presidents
Concn: Used symbolic gestures and actions. A mix b/w Tr & Ei as he was symbolic and helped,
but would only help the CRM if forced, when he intervened though it was at least satisfactory.
Unlike Ei.
The Johnson Years = 1964 ­ 1968
How Johnson helped Black people
Believed in the Great Society, had dreams of Healthcare reform and equality.
1964 Civil Rights Act: faced considerable opposition in Congress.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

History Civil Rights: 1961-1968 Role of the Presidents
passing of 3 CRAs. He decreased black unemployment by 34%. Of the 4 Presidents mentioned
on these factsheets he was the most effective and did the most for black people.…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all resources »