Joseph McCarthy and the Red Scare

Essay by KcmcadamsCollege, UndergraduateA-, April 2009

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Joseph McCarthy, senator of Wisconsin during 1947 to 1957 was the man behind the mask of the red scare in the mid fifties. While still in office as a senator Joseph McCarthy talked himself and many others into the fact that communists where trying to infiltrate the country. He soon began to accuse completely innocent people of being in the communist party, many completely innocent people were charged, held in prison, or put on trial just because someone had wrongly accused them. This came to be known as the Red Scare. It was called the Red Scare because the communist party was known for using the color red to show and express their feelings and beliefs, many communists wore red clothing or had other things such as flags. When McCarthy brought up the idea that America was being infiltrated by the communist party, many people were very afraid of what might happen, they became paranoid that even their neighbors or long time friends were communist.

Soon everyone began to accuse other people of being communist.

In the mid fifties after world war two was when the Red Scare began. People became very weary of the people around them because a news report had reported that a communist country had sent spies to the United States. Some reports also had said that the communists had the information to use atomic bombs. Many people thought that the communists would start a nuclear holocaust if they used atomic bombs.

The House Un-American Activities Committee or the HUAC began to investigate communist organizations. The HUAC investigated Hollywood actors, writers, and directors because many people believed that communists were behind the American cinema trying to brainwash the American population. They questioned many famous actors, actresses, writers and directors. To show how serious they were about...