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Stands for House of Un-American Activities Committee. The committee publicly exposed peoples political views and associations.
The house was formed in 1938 and until 1975. The committee grew and morphed from the special investigating committee called the Dies Committee. In 1969 the HUAC was changed to The Committee on Internal Security. And in 1975 the House of Representatives abolished the committee and gave the functions over to the House Judiciary Committee.
Joseph McCarthy was not involved with the HUAC. Many often incorrectly described him of being part of the HUAC. But he was anti-communist. Though McCarthy was a person who accused others of being a communist. He,however, was not a whole committee.
Activities of the HUAC
The HUAC did anti-communist investigations. And the investigation of countless actors and screenwriters. Also the HUAC was influenced by the NARA. The Business Plot was the investigation and allegations of a plot to seize the White House. The Plot against FDR, and The White House Putsch were all the names for The Business Plot. It was an uncovered conspiracy plot involving several wealthy businessmen to overthrow. President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933. The Business Plots records are held by the NARA (The National Archives and Records Administration). The Alger Hissspy case in 1948. Many believed that Whittaker Chambers, who alleged that Hiss, a high State Department official, was a Soviet spy.
John Stephens Wood
Karl Earl Mundt
John Parnell Thomas
Harold Himmel Velde
Felix Edward Hebert
John Elliot Rankin
Edwin Edward Wills
Gordon H. Scerer
Richahard Ichord Jr.
Martin Dies Jr.
The "Dies Committee"
John W. McCormack and Samuel Dickstein were the chairman and vice-chairman of the committee. The Dies committee was a special investigating committee founded by Martin Dies in 1938 until 1944. The Dies committee started investigating The German American involvement in the Nazi party. And also investigated the Klu Klux Klan and German American activity. The committee did not really do much with the investigations. They also briefly investigated the "Wartime Internment" of Japanese Americans. The committee mainly just investigated security at the camps.
In 1947 the HUAC held trials and hearings against apparent "communist” propaganda. It took 9 days for all the hearings. If the actor was "guilty' he would be convicted on "Contempt of Congress" charges for not speaking when asked a question. And those "Communists" were then called the "Hollywood ten" and were blacklisted by the people of Hollywood. Most people who were put on trials were in the Hollywood Motion Picture Industry. Almost 300 actors, screenwriters, directors, and radio commentators were boycotted by the studios in Hollywood but the majority was screenwriters. during this time many public employees and private employees had to take a loyalty oath.
The Hollywood ten were the people as follow
Herbert Biberman, screenwriter and director
Ring Lardner Jr., screenwriter
John Howard Lawson, screenwriter
Edward Dmytryk, director
Adrian Scott, producer and screenwriter
Samuel Ornitz, screenwriter
Lester Cole, screenwriter
Albert Maltz, screenwriter
Dalton Trumbo, screenwriter
Alvah Bessie, screenwriter
Also the great
left the U.S to fink work because he was blacklisted.
of the artists succeeded in rebuilding their careers.
The movie studios started making anti-Soviet and anti-communist films.
"The Red Menace, "I Was a Communist for the FBI" "Red Planet Mars"
"John Wayne's Big Jim McLain" and "I Married a Communist".
These movies might not have been the best movies in the world but they had a very worthy cause. The cause was that Holly woods critics did not believe that the actors were not communists. This ended the threatened boycott against the actors and screenwriters.
The decline of good reputation
After the Blacklisting the HUACs critics grew. Many critics said that the HUAC was abusing and violating the constitutional Rights of men. That same group believed that the F.B.I., the Courts, and the Police should discover and prosecute alleged "communists". In the year 1967 the HUAC lost great amounts of credibility. By making
Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman
to appear in court to give testimony. Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman or the Yippies did not fear nor respect the HUAC. This was very problematic for the HUAC members. The Yippies used media to make a mockery of the court proceedings. They did this by dressing up in very odd dressings. Like once Jerry Rubin came dressed to a session in an American Revolutionary War soldier outfit. Were he passed out copies of "The Declaration of Independence". Abbi Hoffman also dressed oddly. Once he dressed as Santa Claus but it was not Christmas. Also Abbi was arrested for wearing the American flag. Where he then said "I regret that I have but one shirt to give for my country," Which is a reference to what the late Nathan Hale said before he was put to death.
In 1969, the House changed the committee's name to the
Committee on Internal Security
. When the House abolished the committee in 1975, its functions were transferred to the House Judiciary Committee.
The Importance of the HUAC.
The importance of this topic is vast, there is so many things that one could take from this committee but I would want to emphasized one thing and one thing only. When we as human beings feel a threat we will respond. But when we respond in a way that jeopardizes others jobs and lives that is a horrible way to react to a threat like communists. The HUAC stole and took advantage of our inalienable rights. They persecuted and held trials for many who did nothing wrong. They violated the
of many. They manipulated and preyed upon the peoples fears and their paranoia to get what they wanted.
Citation and notation
Book= "Joseph McCarthy the misuse of political power"
1996 copyright. The Millbrook pres. Brookfield Connecticut
By Daniel Cohen
Internet= www.Wikipedia.com this page was last modified 14:36, 3 February 2007.
All text is available under the terms of the
GNU Free Documentation License
Buhle, Buhle, and Georgakas, ed., Encyclopedia of the American Left.
Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1992)
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