Hostility and the Resurgence of Conservatism

Hostility and The Resurgence of Conservatism

In the 1968 U.S. Presidential election Republican Richard Nixon became the 37th President of the United States. It became apparent during this time that this was the beginning stages of the Conservative Movement which would shape the next forty years in the United States. This Conservative Movement can be attributed to the changing social and economic conditions going on within the United States, but more directly and more importantly it stemmed from the blatant hostility that many had to the groups which had mobilized to assert their civil rights. Conservatives within the United States were able to change the liberal attitudes that had seemed dominant in the early 1960s.
It is obvious with events such as the mainstream acceptance of George Wallace as a viable political candidate, the unexpected resistance to the open-housing marches in Chicago. The assassinations of key figures in the Civil Rights movement, and the silent majority within the United States revolting against the culture of confrontation that the conservative movement can chiefly be seen as a direct result of opposition to these groups which had worked so hard to mobilize to assert their civil rights.
Before this opposition began, the civil rights movement was achieving many of the goals and moderates that the liberal reforms had set out to seek. This is seen especially during Lyndon Johnston’s tenure as President of the United States. With the Civil Rights Bill Act of 1964, and the many reforms to programs such as Social Security, Medicare, Education and new immigration laws, the United States was becoming more liberal. President Johnston and the Supreme Court were fundamentally changing laws that had previously been based on race. As Eric Foner writes, “Under the guidance of Earl Warren…the Court vastly expanded the rights enjoyed by all American citizens, and placed them beyond the reach of legislative and local majorities.”(pg. 214).