1968 is widely regarded as one of the most significant years in American history. It was a year filled with political, social, and cultural upheaval that forever changed the course of American society. From civil rights to anti-war protests, from the assassinations of prominent figures to the election of a new president, 1968 was a year that shaped America in ways that are still felt today.
Civil Rights Movement
The Civil Rights Movement had been gaining momentum throughout the 1960s, but it wasn’t until 1968 that significant progress was made. The passing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964 and the Voting Rights Act in 1965 had already laid the groundwork for legal equality, but there was still much work to be done.
In April of 1968, Martin Luther King Jr., one of the most prominent leaders of the Civil Rights Movement, was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. His death sparked riots and protests across America. Despite this tragedy, Congress passed the Fair Housing Act just days later which prohibited discrimination based on race when it comes to buying or renting a home.
The Vietnam War
Opposition to the Vietnam War also reached its peak in 1968. Many Americans were against this conflict and demanded its end.
In January of that year, North Vietnam launched a surprise attack on South Vietnam known as the Tet Offensive. This attack shocked Americans who had been told by their government that victory was imminent.
Protests against the war intensified throughout the country and on August 28th during Democratic National Convention held at Chicago’s International Amphitheater thousands of antiwar protesters gathered outside while inside delegates nominated Hubert H. Humphrey for President despite his support for US involvement in Vietnam war.
The assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr., Robert F Kennedy (brother of President JFK), and Malcolm X, a prominent civil rights activist, were all tragic events that occurred in 1968. These three men were important figures in the fight for civil rights and their deaths had a profound impact on the country.
The presidential election of 1968 was also a pivotal moment in American history. Richard Nixon, the Republican candidate, won the election over Hubert Humphrey, who was backed by President Lyndon B. Johnson. This election marked a shift in American politics as voters sought change and an end to the Vietnam War.
In conclusion, 1968 was a year of profound change and upheaval in America. The Civil Rights Movement made significant progress despite its losses; opposition to the Vietnam War reached its peak; assassinations of important figures shook the country; and the presidential election marked a shift in American politics. These events shaped America and continue to have an impact on society today.