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The Sixties: The Years That Shaped A Generation -

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(generated from captions) THEME MUSIC That war was an emergency. single hour of the day. It was on our mind every the greatness of America MAN: Somewhere I read that

is the right to protest for rights. I'm proud, that meant something. When they said I'm black and it was the age of self-indulgence, It was the age of selfishness, it was the age of anti-authority. It was absolutely exhilarating. to be alive, ever for sure. It was the greatest time idealistic time. The '60s was the last on to Chicago and let's win this. My thanks to all of you and now it's Thank you very much. GUNSHOT with Robert Kennedy's death, MAN: I think an era ended and Martin Luther King's and we may still be in that time. and doomed us for some time it best when he said, I think Jack Newfield said after that we became A generation of might-have-beens. of bitterness and animosity I think there's an amount to carry to its grave. that our generation's going THEME MUSIC preliminaries were in full swing. By late spring, the presidential than ever with college students. Eugene McCarthy was more popular him at Berkeley. Like the thousands who cheered REPORTER: ..tumultuous welcome. three agencies of government I think there are really that need to be somewhat altered Intelligence Agency, One is the Central the second is the FBI APPLAUSE AND CHEERING under General Hershey. and the third, the draughtboards APPLAUSE of Robert Kennedy McCarthy's supporters were suspicious who they regarded as an opportunist. was a more charismatic campaigner But it was also clear that Kennedy a broader coalition. and was appealing to workers, women, Not just students but blue-collar

and the poor. a wide range of minority groups a dramatic political transformation. Kennedy himself was undergoing who had been a hawk on Vietnam, The man who was known as ruthless, was now calling for peace for the dispossessed. and becoming an advocate happened to him was I think one thing that that his brother was murdered a profound impact on him. and I think that had

On an airplane during the campaign may have been Jack Newfield, someone asked him, on capital punishment?" "What's your position and he said, "I'm against it." Some issue had come up,

you were at the Justice Department, Whoever it was, said, "Well, when when you were Attorney General." "that wasn't your position, I hadn't read Camus." He said, "Well, then of all reads Camus What politician first

for having changed a position? and second, uses it as a reason existentialist, Albert Camus, the French had written about the rebel spirit though run by professionals, and the Kennedy campaign, anti-Establishment character. began to take on an common cause with Cesar Chavez In California, Kennedy made and his farm workers' union. of the Kennedy story. I share that more romantic version those stories in which But again, it's one of and our own hopes. we project our own fantasies was the showdown The California primary between Kennedy and McCarthy - for change within the system. the two candidates calling The two rebel spirits. who emerged victorious. On June 4, it was Kennedy It was after midnight. in Los Angeles was jammed. The ballroom at the Ambassador Hotel The heat, stifling. But Kennedy was at his best. What I think is quite clear in the last analysis is that we CAN work together within the United States and that what has been going on the last three years - over the period of the disenchantment with our society, the divisions, the violence, between blacks and whites, the divisions, whether it's and the more affluent, between the poor on the war in Vietnam, or between age groups or that we can start to work together. and a selfish country We are a great country and a compassionate country my basis for running and I intend to make that the next few months. over the period of the reformers The anti-war movement, who might actually win. now had a presidential candidate in a different direction. The country wants to move problems within our own country We want to deal with our own and we want peace in Vietnam. CHEERING and walked through this pantry area MAN: When Kennedy finished, I turned conference would be held on my way to where the press and Kennedy was right behind me and I heard these shots ring out he was already down and I turned, and the place went crazy. and bleeding badly and It was an absolute scene of bedlam. GENERAL PANDEMONIUM and Kennedy was removed, And after the whole scene was over a number of my colleagues photographers broke down, including a couple of burly this serving table and wept openly. put their heads down on the... on An extraordinary thing happened by train to Washington when Kennedy's body was transported National Cemetery. for burial at Arlington appeared along the tracks Thousands of people spontaneously in silent tribute. with Robert Kennedy's death I think an era ended and Martin Luther King's. working together accomplished great things An era in which we could have we may still be in that time and doomed us for some time and to be shattered, fragmented the people we could be. and something less than

it best when he said, I think Jack Newfield said after that we became A generation of might-have-beens. 'CALIFORNIA HERE I COME' BAND PLAYS was a world apart. The Republican Convention in Miami Safe from turmoil. Spiro Agnew Nixon and his running mate "The Forgotten Americans" appealed to those they called law and order. yearning for stability,

were coming together at once. All of the crises of the '60s demonstrations, The student, the anti-war movement away the turning of the Civil Rights demonstration to get laws changed, from sort of non-violent to riot and quasi-revolution and I think there was a sense that the country was coming apart and here we were, suddenly we were losing a war. My fellow Americans, the long, dark night for America is about to end. APPLAUSE AND CHEERING APPLAUSE CONTINUES The time has come...

The time has come for us to leave the valley of despair and climb the mountain so that we may see the glory of the dawn. A new day for America and a new dawn for peace and freedom in the world.

But at the Democratic Convention in Chicago, the system was falling apart on national television.

It was one of these dreadful and amazing confrontations where the forces that have been building for a long time come into collision. Leaders of the anti-war movement, Dave Dellinger, Abbie Hoffman and Tom Hayden were determined to protest at the Democratic Convention. ANNOUNCER: Richard J. Daley. Mayor Richard Daley, the last of the big city bosses,

was not about the let that happen. Daley would not grant permits allowing protestors to march or hold rallies. ..and as long as I'm mayor of this town, there'll be law and order in Chicago. CHEERING The city was an armed camp. There were 12,000 police, 6,000 Illinois National Guardsmen, another 6,000 army troops including some just back from Vietnam. There were never more than about 10,000 demonstrators easily outnumbered by police and soldiers. Some of us felt, I was certainly one of them, that was altogether likely that we would not come out of the week alive. Somebody was not going to make it through the week. Wednesday, August 28 was the day everything exploded. It began with a peaceful rally at the Band Shell in Grant Park. Anti-war organisers were still planning to march to the convention. But when a young protestor climbed the flagpole

and lowered the American flag, the police charged. That afternoon at the convention, Democrats voted down the peace platform.

For McCarthy and Kennedy delegates, it was a bitter defeat. Back on the streets, angry, frustrated demonstrators managed to reassemble in front of the Hilton Hotel

where the candidates had their headquarters. They were just as nasty and crude and awful and ugly as they could be and you could see those cops were just sitting there, seething and anger and resentment over it. Under the full glare of TV lights and cameras, the police attacked. They clubbed indiscriminately - protestors, reporters, bystanders. The official government investigation would call this a police riot.

SCREAMING AND CHAOS In a confrontation that would be replayed countless times, Connecticut Senator Abraham Ribicoff denounced Mayor Daley's police. With George McGovern as president of the United States, we wouldn't have to have Gestapo's tactics in the streets of Chicago. CHEERING

COMMENTATOR: Mr Daley is not pleased with Senator Ribicoff. How hard it is to accept the truth. CHEERING AND UPROAR COMMENTATOR: And he looked at Mayor Daley. That night, Hubert Humphrey won the Democratic nomination.

But it was a hollow victory. You had Hubert Humphrey weeping in the shower from the effects of tear gas that was being sprayed

in the park beneath the Conrad Hilton Hotel. The way it played out was extremely dramatic. But what played out there was a fact - that the Democratic Party was finished. Nixon used an effective line after that Democratic Convention.

He said, "Look, if they can't unite their party, "how can they unite the country?" And he was right. But the truth was, I don't think anybody could have united us in 1968. Just a few days before Daley called the army into Chicago, Russian tanks invaded Prague. They made Mayor Daley look like a pacifist. Many anti-war Americans identified with the young, free-thinking Czech students who wanted to change the old communist system. Dubcek, who represented the Prague Spring, he was like a mild reformer and this tremendous movement grew in Prague which thought that is was going to change the world just like we did and you know, it did finally, and God bless them, but they paid a big price of almost 30 years before it finally happened. Preoccupied with the war in Vietnam, the United States took no action to stop the Russians. The Czechs had little to defend themselves

beyond their own powers of persuasion. Invited by the Czech author Milan Kundera, to observe what was happening, Carlos Fuentes and other writers came to Prague. We were witnesses to the fact that this was a revolution to give socialism a human face as Dubcek had said and this other revolution of the year 1968

was trampled by the Soviet Union

which did not want socialism with any face. It wanted Soviet imperial domination of its perimeter of defence to have a policy that cares for society, that takes care of the society, but it also respects personal freedom - this is what the Czechs wanted and of course the Soviet Union would not tolerate it.

It was the beginning of the end for the Soviet empire. 20 years later, the Velvet Revolution ended Soviet domination of Czechoslovakia and playwright Vaclav Havel, a veteran of the Prague Spring, became president of a democratic country. In 1968, here was was Paris, Chicago, Prague and finally Mexico City. This plaza, the scene of another bloody confrontation. It had been building all summer. Mexican students were on the march challenging an authoritarian government that claimed to be democratic. On the night of October 2, students filled the plaza. Soldiers with fixed bayonets surrounded them. Suddenly without warning, a helicopter hovering overhead opened fire. They wanted something called freedom. Imagine. As simple as that. They wanted freedom and they went out in the streets to demand this freedom and the answer of the government was to mow them down in October 2, 1968 at Tlatelolco, the plaza of free cultures. Tlatelolco, the same place where Pedro de Alvarado had massacred the Aztecs in 1521. The massacre, known as the 'Night of Sorrow', was the worst single disaster of 1968. But the world barely noticed. The Mexican government shrouded the massacre in secrecy. Only recently has it been officially acknowledged and investigated. But it was a turning point in Mexican history. The night when one-party rule lost whatever legitimacy it had. From this terrifying event in which over 500 young men and women died, a new Mexico was born. A new democratic Mexico that has finally flowered and these days, in the 1990s, it took a long time but it would not have happened without the events of 1968. But the massacre took place just before the Olympics in Mexico City and horrified Harry Edwards who was organising a boycott of the games by black athletes. There were so many people being picked up, so many people being killed that they were literally hauling out corpses in fish nets under helicopters like they did in Vietnam because they did not want mass funerals and so forth either just prior to and most certainly not during the Olympic games. The world heard very little about the student massacre. But no one missed the Black Power protests at the Olympics by American sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos.

Smith and Carlos' demonstration was not anti-America. It was pro-human rights and more specifically, pro-black rights. People either wept and cheered or they were outraged to the rafters.

Smith and Carlos were expelled from the Olympics. But their Black Power salute became one of the most provocative and enduring images of 1968. Another protest movement would emerge by summer's end. Spearheaded by veterans of the anti-war and Civil Rights Movements, it tapped into a deep well of anger at the inequalities between men and women. One early participant was Susan Brownmiller -

a TV news writer who thought she was finished with activism. A friend of mine said to me one day, you know, women are meeting and they're really talking about women's issues and I said, "I don't believe it," and she said, "Well, there's a meeting next Tuesday. "Maybe you'd want to come." Everyone goes around the room and speaks from their own experience

and they began to talk about unwanted pregnancy and how each of them had coped with it and it was my turn. And...I was older, you know I was in my 30s, they were in their 20s, and I'm a competitive person and I'm thinking to myself, they're talking about one abortion, huh? So, I said, "I've had three abortions, all illegal," and then I started to cry. And I said, "I guess I'm lucky to be alive."

And what was so astonishing about that moment is that my best friend, Jan, who had brought me to this meeting didn't know about those abortions. You told nobody. You know, you made your arrangements, you went off secretly. In 1968 in New York, it was a first for women to say, "Yeah, I had an illegal abortion." From the privacy pf consciousness-raising groups, the women's liberation movement quickly catapulted itself into the public arena. With picket signs in their hands and guerrilla theatre tactics up their sleeves, 100 women converged on the 'Miss America' pageant in Atlantic City. But first, they had notified the press, which turned out in force. The 'Miss America' contest was so mind-boggling to reporters because no one had thought that maybe some of us didn't like the idea of a beauty contest where women paraded in bathing suits and high heeled shoes. # Miss America... WOMAN: Yessiree, boys! Step right up. How much am I offered for this number one piece of prime American property? She sings in the kitchen... SUSAN: We, the radical activists, knew how to put on a good demo, you know. It was the Radical Movement's first national action. CHEERY COUNTRY SONG The demonstrators had hoped to burn bras like draft cards. But the city refused to grant them a fire permit. Famous for a bra-burning that never happened, the protest generated enormous publicity and debate. Despite the lack of actual flames, the 'Miss America' pageant protest sparked a social revolution that is still underway. # I caught you cheatin'

# And runnin' around # There's a smile upon your face # While another takes my place # And there'll be laughter instead of fear... More than ever, conservative Americans thought the country and the world were on the verge of a nervous breakdown. They wanted law and order. George Wallace was their man. CHEERING Well, I'm for Wallace because I feel that all through history, whenever times became so difficult a leader has arose, and this is the leader. TRUMPET MUSIC Independent presidential candidate, George Wallace, had once declared segregation forever. Now, the Alabama governor was holding rallies as far north as San Francisco and polls in October showed him winning 20% of the vote. REPORTER: What do you think is wrong with America? With America? The rioting... The trouble in the streets, the trouble in our schools,

the Supreme Court which is almost, well, let's say, we think is pro-Communist. (People chant) We want Wallace! We want Wallace! Let's talk about law and order a moment and we need to talk about it. But really, you don't have to talk about it. You see it all around you all the time - the breakdown of law and order. The reaction that he started scared me because he had the capacity of just working up a crowd to a frenzy.

When that same group from Berkeley were grovelling around in their beards and filth in Selma Alabama for eight weeks the 'Washington Post' said, "It is a great and Holy Crusade." And now they've created themselves a Frankenstein monster and their chickens are coming home to roost all over this country. RAPTUROUS APPLAUSE AND CHEERING

Wallace enjoyed responding to the protesters who heckled him. Come up here after I've completed my speech and I'll autograph your sandals for you. I'll let you...I'll do that. And I'll... Oh, yeah, a good haircut would help you. I think that solves your problem. A good barber could cure you. It was really the beginning of what is today the...