What: “Enemies From Within”
When: February 9, 1960
Where: Wheeling, West Virginia This piece is historically significant because it is the beginning of McCarthyism, the term coined because of this very speech and others like it given by Senator McCarthy. It started an uproar in the country and contributed to paranoia everywhere. This speech was given on the Senate floor, where McCarthy couldn’t be charged with slander, but also where he basically tore down the president. In this speech he goes on to disapprove of Truman’s foreign policy and claim communists in the presidential administration, or the harboring of communists by members of the administration. Senator McCarthy was later fired by the president of the United States for this speech and his wild accusations as a whole. This was 1950, not a very controversial age, but this was one of the most outlandish and wild speeches ever given on the Senate Floor. This piece is personally significant because I happen to find this whole era in our American history fascinating, and Joseph McCarthy was a big part of that. While I neither admire, nor respect a man that makes wild accusations against the people that run and defend a country I would be living in, in another 46 years, I did think it was quite interesting that out of all of the things he did, McCarthy managed to make a space for himself in our history books. While we don’t live in an oppressive society or have government control, he still shouldn’t have gotten away with ruining as many important careers as he did. While I don’t like what he did, I think this speech is an important part of our nation’s history and that is why I chose to recite it.
“Enemies From Within”
The reason why we find ourselves in a position of impotency is not because our only powerful potential enemy has sent men to invade our shores. But rather