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Concept.png McCarthyism 
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McCarthyism, also known as the second Red Scare, was the political repression and persecution of left-wing individuals and a campaign spreading fear of alleged communist and Soviet influence on American institutions and of Soviet espionage in the United States during the late 1940s through the 1950s.[1]

Official narrative

A handful of Hollywood screenwriters were blacklisted from the movie industry during the late 1940s through the 1950s. Some State Department employees got in trouble. Spartacus Educational covers this subject well.

Wider persecution

McCarthyism also seeped through all levels of American society.

Starting in 1947, the Loyalty-Security Program, required all federal employees to be checked out by the FBI. They could lose their jobs if, for example, they had joined a defunct hiking group that was on the Attorney General’s list over suspect organizations, or signed a petition calling for nuclear disarmament, or socialized with people of other races. Within a few years, similar loyalty-security programs had spread from the nation’s capital to local governments, school systems, movie studios, defense plants and beyond. By the late 1950s such anti-Communist tests for employment reached one-fifth of the nation’s work force.[2]

At thousands of public libraries, efforts by the self-proclaimed "loyal Americans" to save libraries put more than just library collections under the microscope. The librarians themselves were scrutinized to ensure that they harbored no troubling past or present connections to radical political groups. Pressure groups examined library services closely as well, keeping an eye out for subversion in library exhibits or making sure that controversial books were only available by request, not on open shelving. Most of this censorship effort went unreported[3]

Labor unions saw a decrease in membership and some were completely destroyed during the McCarthy era because government officials claimed that they were Communist.[4] Several thousand Seamen and dockworkers lost their job because of unaccountable se"security" programs.[5]

At the height of McCarthyism, General Electric took extreme lengths to cleanse itself of anything and anyone with communist ties. The company hired Charles LaForge, a New York State Bureau of Criminal Investigations inspector to report on un-American activity within the workplace. By 1953, GE announced it would discharge "all admitted communists, spies and saboteurs and will suspend employees who refuse to testify under oath on such matters when queried in public hearings conducted by competent government authority"[4]


“Just as the Palmer Raids turned up no actual bombers and the McCarthy era tactics identified few spies or saboteurs, so also the government's yield of actual terrorists from its current preventive detention program has been staggeringly small. According to Ashcroft, all of the detainees were "suspected terrorists." Yet of the approximately two thousand persons, only four have been charged with any crime relating to terrorism. None has been charged with involvement in the September 11 crimes, and the vast majority have been affirmatively cleared of any criminal charges by the FBI. As noted above, the government's policy has been to release and/or deport detainees only after the FBI has cleared them. Yet as of October 2002, Attorney General Ashcroft announced that the INS had deported 431 detainees, and in July 2002, the Justice Department reported that only eighty-one individuals remained in immigration detention. Thus, by the government's own account, virtually none of those detained as "suspected terrorists" turned out to be terrorists.”
David Cole (2003)  [6]


McCarthyism victims on Wikispooks

David Bohm
Frank FurediProfessor of Sociology at the University of Kent.


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