Counterculture (Peace, Protest) Remedios_Stein


            In the 1960’s there was a rising culture of peace and protests. This sparked the counterculture of people who were protesters who wanted to stop wars. These people became known as, “hippies”. They were mostly people in their late teens to their early twenties; although, there were some who were much older who tended to be the leaders of groups. Many of them lived in San Francisco, California, and the surrounding areas, as well as universities across the country. Hippies tended to be meditative people who dressed in loose clothing and were into promotion of peace. This led to large events such as Woodstock where thousands of counter cultural people met to hold one of the biggest events in the United States at the time. Hippies were into smoking marijuana because it made them feel more meditative and peaceful. Another popular drug they used was LSD.  Also, they would stage demonstrations in public places such as universities and government buildings in protest of the Vietnam war.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

          Today, people doing things like this and acting this way wouldn’t be a very big deal. However, back in the sixties such a drastic shift from the cultural norms of the day was almost unheard of. This was following the fifties were the word of the day was conformity and conservatism. This massive shift in culture was a shock to the older generation of citizens. The Hippies didn’t do what they were expected to do, and didn’t support the military and government as a whole. Not only did they not support them, but they actively protested against them. They were against the buildup of military power in response to the Soviet Union and preferred peaceful methods. This sentiment escalated when the United States became involved with the Vietnam Conflict. Large scale protests were staged in protest of the war and violence. These protests only became larger and more frequent with the reinstatement of the draft and the images that were sent back from Vietnam.Woodstock_redmond_stage

          This sparks a minor problem because it means that our military will not be as strong with so many peace protesters. This is not a major problem, but with this new idea it makes less people want to join to fight for our wars or help other countries to find peace. In 2014, we reflect on this as an era. This is a break from a previously militaristic country. The idea of this was a new thing that more and more people wanted to be a part of. The teens in our country were getting into harmful drugs; which at the time were not looked at as harmful in a major way. I don’t think that something such as this could happen today to the degree that it was before. Mainly because of the strict rules that our society has today on drugs and 0 tolerance rules. People today have peacefully protested similarly, but this has not been effective.

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