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Author Topic: How divided are we?  (Read 1647 times)
Citizen James
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« on: July 25, 2004, 02:06:00 am »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.
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cwelsch
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« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2004, 01:32:24 am »

Then as now nobody likes the protestors.  Most people were against Vietnam AND against the protests.  Today people aren't much more interested.

But Vietnam had a draft.  That made it much scarier and more personal.  No draft for the Iraq war so a lot less personal.  Maybe 'more divided but not as emotional' is a good way to put it.
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StatesRights
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« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2004, 08:14:26 am »

We are not even close to being as divided as we were during the Viet Nam era. I was in high school and college in the late '60s and early '70s and what is going on today is far from the animosity I experienced then. As the previous poster noted we had military conscription then and that made a huge difference. That is one reason I do not see the draft returning. While things are not happy right now they were worse then... a LOT worse.

Yeah we don't have race riots or kids getting killed at colleges. This is nothing like the late 60s.
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teri
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« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2004, 08:27:49 am »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.

Vietnam created a passionate & personal divide in the country, fueled mainly by the draft age young & the hippie movement.  But, I agree with your father,  I think the divide in the country is deeper now.  Social issues separate us , religion or lack of it, family values & personal responsibility. Opinions that are so  firmly held, the line between left & right is  difficult to cross.
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Scorpio
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« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2004, 01:26:40 pm »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.



The divisions that grew in the 60's were different.

You had the Vietnam War, and the civil rights movement, and women's rights.  Lots of very partisan issues.

Today, we have instant gratification via the internet and 24 hour cable news...

With all of that in mind; I think the country feels much more divided today that ever.

My answer: The partisan differences run deeper.

People are far more passionate now, and express it.

Folks who hate George W. Bush, REALLY hate George W. Bush, there is no lukewarm here.

So, liberal folks like me will vote for anyone that isn't George W. Bush.


Also as a sidebar - I don't think there has ever been a president more dangerous at the helm than Bush.  This flavor of Republicans that's squatting in Washington D.C., are truly repugnant and evil.


They want something that isn't the America I was born in.


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StatesRights
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« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2004, 02:02:13 pm »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.

Also as a sidebar - I don't think there has ever been a president more dangerous at the helm than Bush.  This flavor of Republicans that's squatting in Washington D.C., are truly repugnant and evil.

The 16th President was.
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Scorpio
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2004, 02:51:56 pm »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.

Also as a sidebar - I don't think there has ever been a president more dangerous at the helm than Bush.  This flavor of Republicans that's squatting in Washington D.C., are truly repugnant and evil.

The 16th President was.


Lincoln?  Perhaps.


So does that mean we are destined for another civil war?  If Bush is elected, I fear that may come to pass.

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Scorpio
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« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2004, 05:18:15 pm »


The divisions that grew in the 60's were different.

I think the country feels much more divided today that ever.

My answer: The partisan differences run deeper.

People are far more passionate now, and express it.

Folks who hate George W. Bush, REALLY hate George W. Bush, there is no lukewarm here.

So, liberal folks like me will vote for anyone that isn't George W. Bush.

Also as a sidebar - I don't think there has ever been a president more dangerous at the helm than Bush.  




You could substitute Richard M. Nixon for George W. Bush in the above and you would have expressed the sentiments of many people some 30 years ago. The big difference today is the lack of rioting and street protests.



I don't recall the hatred for Nixon being as passionate as the hatred of Bush.

You are correct though; the violence in the country over ideology is something we have not seen in this generation.


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StatesRights
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« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2004, 07:07:00 pm »

My father made a comment not to long ago that he beleives the US is more divided now than it was during the Vietnam war.

I was very young during the war, and have very few memories of it so I was wondering how those who were around during those times think of that.

Or for those who are tallented in history, how the divisions of today contrast with other divisive periods of the past.

Also as a sidebar - I don't think there has ever been a president more dangerous at the helm than Bush.  This flavor of Republicans that's squatting in Washington D.C., are truly repugnant and evil.

The 16th President was.


Lincoln?  Perhaps.


So does that mean we are destined for another civil war?  If Bush is elected, I fear that may come to pass.



Some times revolutions are needed to improve our nation.
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PBrunsel
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« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2004, 09:13:49 pm »

A very good showing of division is the FDR Years. We were totally divided from 1933-1941. It was the Wealthy (who hated Roosevelt) and the poor (who loved Roosevelt.) FDR was a great divider (even more than G. W. Bush is considered). FDR alienated entire groups of people, but because these people hated FDR.

The West and South were FDRs strongest bases of support. In South Carolina in every one of his elections he won over 90% of the vote. The Northeast and Midwest had the anti-Roosevelt people.

The nation was very polarized during the New Deal Era. Either you fully supported the New Deal or you fully opposed it; there was no middle ground. The New Deal divided this nation more than anything.  
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David S
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« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2004, 10:36:30 am »

During Vietnam we were probably as divided as today over the Iraq war in terms of numbers for and against. But the passions were much higher then because of the draft. People can get really agitated when government forcibly takes their sons and sends them to a war they don't believe in, expecially if they return in a body bag.
Vietnam created a huge distrust of government which still exists in some people today. (Yours truly included)
Then as now, we were given all sorts of BS reasons for the war. At that time it was the domino theory, the countries of Asia would fall to communism like a line of dominos and eventually we would be fighting the war on our shores. But we didn't win the war and the countries of Asia did not fall to communism and the Viet Cong did not paddle across the Pacific to attack California. Vietnam went back to being what it had always been, a dirt poor 3rd world country which poses no threat to us as long as we don't try to occupy their lands. So much for the domino theory, but unfortunately 58000 young men paid for that error with their lives. It still makes me angry today.
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Schmitz in 1972
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« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2004, 01:51:40 pm »

I think America is badly divided, but what we have today isn't nearly as bad as the 1850s. So Cheney uses the f-word, that doesn't nearly compare to Preston Brooks caning of Charles Sumner. So the Bush hatred has risen really high, I don't see the Kerry states suceeding if Bush is elected. So there's a big mess in Iraq in 2004, it's not any worse than the mess in Kansas in 1854. In short, I don't see us going to a civil war any time soon.
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cwelsch
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« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2004, 02:10:55 pm »
« Edited: July 28, 2004, 02:15:55 pm by cwelsch »

FDR was the wealthy.

Since forever the Democratic Party has been the wealthy (FDR, Kennedys, etc.) and the working class and poor.  The Republicans were always middle class and nowadays upper-middle class.

Really rich people have no problem paying taxes, they still have tons left over.  The middle class works hard for its money and it gets pissed off when taxes are levied on it.  The Republicans were middle class since the 1850s when they formed, they've been middle class since then.

This is reflected in contributions, since pre-BCRA the Democrats relied on huge lump-sum donations from uber-wealthy contributors such as Hollywood and trial lawyers.  The Republicans on the other hand got huge numbers of donations from middle class people who gave the personal limit.

After BCRA, the Democrats (any decent analyst will tell you this) lost their huge contributors that helped make up the distance between them and the GOP.  The GOP still has tons of contributors that are now giving $2,000 each.  The Democrats had fewer contributors but each gave way more than the average Republican contributors, who were in turn much more numerous.  That's because the GOP pulls middle class sympathies and the Democrats until Clinton had more trouble with the middle class.

So the people who hated FDR were the middle class and the wealthy middle class, but the truly wealthy quasi-aristocratic people in New England and New York weren't as pissed.  They could afford his shenanigans, after all.


Regardless, despite the fierce hatred of FDR among some at the time, he still won landslide elections.



PS - I have no problem with the Democrats taking money from Hollywood and uberwealthy people, I think it should be legal.  I just think we should be honest about where the support originates.
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