Fariha asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 8 years ago

How was freedom limited during the Red Scare?

2 Answers

  • 8 years ago
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    The largest government action of the Red Scare was the Palmer Raids against anarchist, socialist, and communist groups. Left-wing activists such as Eugene V. Debs were jailed by government officials using the Espionage Act of 1917 and the Sedition Act of 1918. Section Four of the Sedition act empowered Postmaster General Albert S. Burleson to slow or confiscate all Socialist material in the mail, a task that he took on readily. In a spectacle that exposed the paranoia, xenophobia, and fear of anarchism which much of the United States was experiencing, Sacco and Vanzetti, two Italian anarchists, were executed for murder in a trial seen as unfair and protested around the world.

    The second Red Scare manifested itself in several ways, notably through the actions of the House Un-American Activities Committee, the rise of Senator Joseph McCarthy, and the acceleration of the arms race. Propaganda films like Red Nightmare were commissioned to further incite fears of communism and the Soviet Union.

    There were also subtle effects on America's way of life as a result of the Red Scare, which contributed to the popularization of fallout shelters in home construction and regular duck and cover drills at schools. The Red Scare is also cited as one factor that contributed to the rise and popularity of science fiction films during the 1950s and beyond. Many thrillers and science fiction movies of the period used a theme of a sinister, inhuman enemy that was planning to infiltrate society and destroy the American way of life (an example of which being Invasion of the Body Snatchers).

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    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    Well, yes, there was a certain amount of "freedom", if you want to call it that, which was "limited", if you want to call it that, during the Red Scare.

    IF you stood on a street corner and preached the benefits of being a murderous communist that would imprison people for speaking out against the state, or murder entire families because of ONE political dissenter, then you would be watched closer than most other people.

    I don't see that as a "limitation of freedom", any more than when, in a couple of decades before, they actually ARRESTED people for doing the same thing in respects to the NAZIS.

    "The Red Scare" was a real thing, we were in TWO actual shooting wars with the communists during those years. The Leader of the Soviet Union stood in the UN and promised and prophecies our very destruction. People were being machine gunned while trying to escape from communist countries. Communist countries had fences around them and machine guns at the boarder POINTING IN at their own people.

    Overall, I would say that there WAS no "limitations" on freedoms during "The Red Scare".... better known as "The Cold War".

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