The American Journey Modern Times © 2009

Chapter 15: The Vietnam Era

Web Activity Lesson Plans

"Young People and the Draft"

In this chapter students learned about the Vietnam Era. They learned that the Vietnam War began to cause turmoil for both older and younger generations. They also learned that the lack of success in Vietnam led to disillusionment in the government. This web activity reinforces that the youth of America had many doubts the government and the military, and voiced this by staging protests against the draft.

Lesson Description
Students will learn about the antiwar movement and how it relates to young people. After reading the article and answering questions associated with the article, they will use the knowledge to explain that the antiwar movement had a direct impact on the war and an affect on the draft.

Instructional Objectives

  1. The student will be able to explain the antiwar movement and how it relates to young people.
  2. The student will be able to use the information they learn to explain the impact of the antiwar movement on the draft and the Vietnam War.

Student Web Activity Answers

  1. It originally started in the 1950s as a place for laborers, African Americans, and intellectuals to voice their opinions. The organization was taken over by student radicals, who eventually called for an examination of American aspects of society, like politics, the military, and education.
  2. They originally protested in support of civil rights. It moved to an antiwar stance because of the Free Speech Movement and as a result of the U.S. bombing North Vietnam.
  3. Leaders of the antiwar and war resistance movements called for young men to turn in their draft cards during a march on the Pentagon. Those who refused to serve in Vietnam, or dissenters, became part of the movement. Draft evaders were taken to Canada to avoid persecution and churches provided protection as well.
  4. After the Tet Offensive, Americans began to question what the news reported on the progress being made. Many started to oppose the escalation of troops that was taking place. The protest movement took a dramatic and violent turn when police force was used, violent demonstrations on draft boards were organized, and clashes between police and activists at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago took place.
  5. The national organization of draft resisters was formed and began to hold draft card turn-ins.
  6. Answers may vary but could state that young people thought our involvement was unjustified and unfair, that there urgent matters like equality and civil rights that needed to be addressed in America first, and that the draft directly affected their generation in a negative way due to loss of lives.
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