Hate and hysteria Author Murray Levin (1977) wrote

, AMcCarthyism, in acapitalist society, produces extremism, intolerance, instability, and large scale
repression (p.216). He also says that AThe promoters of mass politics raise
the question of justice and attempt to play upon generalized resentments
steaming from deeper layers of personality. The politics of mass society does
not focus on group emailprotected The purpose of these politics is the defense
of the ultimate truth. This “Red scare” started in the twenties and in one form
or another lasted till well after World War 2 was over. McCarthyism was not the
work of psychotics and paranoids. This political hysteria was a mixture of
American conservatism, pluralism, anti-radicalism, racism, and nativism. . In
addition, this passionate form of nationalism was perceived by most Americans
as a perfectly sensible and American way to defend the American way of life
against danger. Louis Hartz (1956) said Athe Red scare was a product of the
American people manipulating themselves as well as the American people
responding to emailprotected According to the popular opinion, Robert
Murray warned that communist were to come and overthrow our form of
government and business enterprises. He said that communism would do five
things. ” First, destroy property rights. Second, take away all personal initiative
in industrial activities. Third, abolish civil government and the political state.

Fourth, destroy the church and religious institutions. Finally, abandon family
relations. Many who actively promoted the hysteria genuinely believed in
conspiracy, consider themselves as patriots, and utilized the hysteria for
private political and economic gain that they usually hid. “Joe McCarthy was
one of the top investigators of communism along with Edgar Hoover, who was
at that time a director of the FBI.”(the hunt began) McCarthy got all his
suspects from Hoover; many times they made false accusations to help their
cause. They were the at the root of hysteria during the 40’s and 50’s.

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McCarthyism has been defined as political murder; many innocent people
were hung, stabbed, and imprisoned for false accusations where evidence
was insufficient. By accusing people of being “Red” McCarthy and Hoover
ignored several amendments that given freedoms of United States citizens.

First, he broke the first amendment that says people have the right to religion,
speech, assembly and politics. For example, in Waterbury, Connecticut a
salesman was sentenced to six months in jail for having remarked to a
customer that Lenin was “brainiest” or “one of the brainiest” political leaders in
the world. In 1919 a citizen of Indiana, in a fit of rage, shot and killed an alien
who yelled “to hell with the United States”; the jury deliberated for two minutes
before acquitting the killer.(Newman) McCarthy also ignored the fifth
amendment that speaks against self incrimination and talks of how due
process. In addition McCarthy saw past the eighth and ninth amendment.

Amendment eight says that people could not be given excessive bail or fines
and were not to be submitted to cruel and unusual punishments. Amendment
nine talks of the rights retained by the people. This amendment specifically
says “The enumeration in the constitution, of certain rights, shall not be
construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people. In fact, many
people produced anti-Soviet propaganda, one was called “A Guide to
anti-Communist action” and another example was called “Is This Tomorrow”.

Twenty eight states passed laws banning the display of red flags. In addition,
Hollywood responded to this hysteria by creating many films portraying
Russians as bad guys. The U.S. Steel Corporation, and it’s president, Judge
Gary, attempted to break a strike by creating the impression that it had little to
do with the demands for wages and hours but was instead a communist
conspiracy and part of a larger plan to hurt American industry and help the
Bolshevik revolution. U.S. Steel was also one of the many corporations that
used large numbers of private detectives as labor spies. This succeeded and
played a major role in escalating national anti-radical hysteria. This labor spy
would infiltrate unions, urge laborers not to join unions, and promote
anti-strike activities. These Astrike emailprotected are detecting unions one day,
and Bolshevism the next. At one time U.S. steel used the ARed emailprotected and
“other” proofs to brand a strike red and say that these Bolsheviks were ready
to resort to violence and terror. Local newspapers were controlled by U.S.

Steel, and many distinguished papers such as “The New York Times” this went
hand in hand with the materials to expose the “Reds”. Hoover dispatched
radical documents to the press as “proof of the Red conspiracy ” this is what
really initiated the first large scale attempt by the United States government to
maintain a centralized file of radicals in the headquarters of the department.

This file became a major source of information. Most of the violence was
provoked by the public authorities. The Red scare gave elites a vantage point;
this was a technique for managing tension and maintaining power. For elites,
political hysteria was profitable. This hysteria was used largely by business
leaders to curb labor’s new aggressiveness. “For elites political hysteria and
democratic repression can be a technique for managing tension and
sustaining power.”(Newman) In government, General MacArthur tried to
commit political against president Truman. MacArthur tried to discredit the
president along with his staff; he said that conspiracy was in the air and that
the government was trying to appease red china. After a while his steam died
down and he went away. The main problem was that people rallied around him
because he was a prominent war hero; this single man caused national
uproar. There are many parallels in history where suspicion of evil caused
uproar. Many have heard stories of the Salem witch trial that took place in
Massachusetts. A single birthmark could get you burned at the stake. In
another case, Japanese Americans faced their greatest struggle after
December seventh, 1941, when a Japanese strike force destroyed much of
the U.S. naval fleet at Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor. Rage toward Japan was directed
at the Japanese living in the United States, and some feared that Japanese
Americans would commit acts of espionage. Within a year president Franklin
Roosevelt singed Executive order 9066, an unpredicted action intended to
protect the national security of the United States. This act designated areas of
the west coast as military zones from which anyone considered likely to be
disloyal would be relocated inland to remote military reservations. Ninety
percent of those with Japanese ancestry, nearly 110,000 people in all, found
themselves in security camps. While concern about national security always
grows in times of war, this policy has been widely criticized. First, it targeted an
entire category of people, not one of whom was known to have committed a
disloyal act. Second, roughly two-thirds of those imprisoned were U.S. citizens
by birth. Third, although the United States was also at war with Germany and
Italy, no such action was taken against people of German or Italian decent.

Relocation meant selling homes, furnishings, and businesses on short notice
for pennies on the dollar. As a result, almost the entire Japanese-American
population was economically devastated. In military prison camps, surrounded
by barbed wire and armed guards, families suffered greatly as they were
crowded into single rooms, often in buildings that had previously housed
livestock. In 1944 it was finally over. The United states government didn’t
make a formal apology till 1988 when congress awarded $20,000 to
compensate each victim of this policy. The United States became a
superpower as we emerged victorious from world war 2 with the atom bomb we
crushed Japan in 1945 but the Soviet union countered by exploding a bomb of
their own in 1949, unleashing the “Cold War” in which leaders of each
superpower became convinced that their counter parts were committed to
military superiority. From the ‘Red scare we should have learned that
suspicion spreads like wildfire. This suspicion started the arms race. In
addition, we will be paying the cost of the “Cold War” for many years to come ;
the money we spent has left us with an outrageous deficit. The “Cold War”
ended with the breaking of the Berlin wall and the reunification of Germany.

Hate Reader New York: Oceana Publications. Levin, M.B. (1971) Political
Hysteria in America New York, London: Basic Books, inc., publishers Hartz L.

(1956) The liberal Tradition in America New York: Harcourt Brace press
Murray R.E. (1964) Red Scare: A Study of National Hysteria New York: