As the war went on, it began to change perceptions of what America was supposed to be about. Some of the new radicals did not see the war in Vietnam as a policy issue t all, but rather a reflection of things that were deeply wrong with American society and needed to be structurally changed. Before Vietnam, US wars were generally popular, or, if they weren’t, the public at least did not go out into the streets demonstrating against them, or herald themselves as the bringers of a new culture. SDS, or Students for a Democratic Society, was one such fringe-radical group which drew up a plan for a new society in which many of the founding documents of America did not provoke feelings of hypocrisy and unease in its inhabitants. SDS and other radical organizations held frequent rallies in Washington and elsewhere, teach-ins continued, and the anti-war movement gained force and momentum, with some rallies drawing hundreds and thousands of protesters. People in this generation were active in terms of trying to bring about social change in the nation, and this affected future generations of people who were influenced by them positively, as well as changing in terms of those who were opposed to them.
wanted to prevent any possible loss of face to conservative agenda-makers. Having applied successfully a liberal series of programs on the home-front, Johnson initially expanded the war in Vietnam in the hopes that a display of might would allow the North
continuance of “aggression prevention” with the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. The bombings were unsuccessful, and Johnson began sending ground troops to Vietnam in increasingly large numbers. At home, people saw televised “scenes of fleeing refugees, of children maimed by US bombs, and of dying Americans replayed in living rooms night after night, undercutting the official optimism of government press agents” (Boyer et al