The McCarthy Era An Era of Suspicion House of UnAmerican Activities Committee FILMS HAD POWER TO CORRUPT AMERICAN PEOPLE BEGAN INVESTIGATING FILM INDUSTRY FOR DISLOYALTY “HOLLYWOOD 10” – WRITERS, ACTORS, DIRECTORS, AND PRODUCERS JAILED FOR CONTEMPT. – ALL DISCHARGED WHEN THEY REFUSED TO ANSWER COMMITTEE QUESTIONS. WHO WAS IN CHARGE? CHAIRMAN: ASKS J. Parnell Thomas THEM: –“ARE YOU KNOW OR HAVE YOU EVER BEEN A MEMBER OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY?” JOSEPH McCARTHY Came to Power in the SENATE Accused many gov’t employees of being COMMUNISTS American People support him out of FEAR Want communits out of gov’t positions. LEGACY OF HUAC & THE McCARTHY HEARINGS HUNDREDS OF GOV’T WORKERS LOSE THEIR JOBS. MANY IN THE ENTERAINMENT INDUSTRY BECOME “BLACKLISTED” AGE OF SUPPRESSION OF IDEAS & OPEN DISCUSSION WHY? Why were Americans willing to suspend the Bill of Rights to fight Communism? What were they afraid of? What were they trying to protect? What did fear drive some Americans to do? FEAR OF NUCLEAR ATTACK COMUNIST OVER TAKE COMMUNISTS INFILTRATING GOVERNMENT MEET THE ROSENBERGS WHY WERE THEY ARRESTED? Former members of the U.S. Communist Party Inactive for some time. Accused of espionage (giving Soviets the secrets to the ABomb) Rosenberg's cont.. Both denied the charges & claimed that they were being targeted because they were Jewish. Died by electric chair in 1953. First “spies” to be killed. DOWNFALL OF HUAC McCarthy becomes reckless Makes wild accusations against ARMY REPS. Hearings are televised for 36 Days. By April 1954, Public is FED UP Stays in SENATE, yet loses his power and dies in 1957.