The 1960’s – Civil Rights Era


( Photo Credit via Google under Creative Commons )

The start of the 1960’s was said to be a very good era for many people. On January 20, 1961, John F. Kennedy became president of the United States. A very large amount of people loved and admired Kennedy. During the sixties, the fight for civil rights was a main fight. The struggle for civil rights had defined the ‘60s.  ever since Four African American students sat down at a “whites-only” lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, on February 1960 and they had refused to leave. That time, it had started a huge deal between the two races. The federal government stayed out of the civil rights struggle until the year, 1964.

President Johnson pushed a Civil Rights Act through Congress that prohibited discrimination in public places. These laws did not solve the problems facing African Americans during this time though. They did not eliminate racism or poverty and they did not improve the conditions in many African American urban neighborhoods. Many African Americans had to think of their own ways to fight back. Just as black power became the new focus of the civil rights movement in the mid-1960s, other groups were growing similarly impatient with incremental reforms. Student activists grew more radical. They had started to rise against racism and fight back harder for what they needed. Equality needed to happen and it needed to happen soon.

During the 50’s and 60’s, the non-violent protesting of the civil rights movement caused definite tension and it gained national attention. Many amazing things had happened in the sixties for African Americans. August 30, 1966, Constance Baker Motley appointed a federal judge, the first African American woman to hold that office, Shirley Chisholm was the first African American woman elected to the US House of Representatives, and on October 29, 1969, The Supreme Court ordered immediate desegregation of school districts. Some more big things were that the ads were filled with images like Volkswagen buses decorated with groovy graffiti, daisies and other power flowers, peace signs, psychedelic drawings in DayGlo colors. Girl power was also a big deal. The Beatles had made great hits and really started to blow up. Girls and guys all around the world fell in love with them and their music.

The 60’s seemed to be a pretty good time compared to the years before for many people.