How did Kennedy and Johnson administrations exemplify a liberal vision of the federal government?
The presidential campaign and election of John F. Kennedy plays a key in laying precedence of a great but highly liberal society. However, before Kennedy could drive his agenda that was full of promises to the point he was assassinated, Lyndon B. Johnson carried forward the baton for a ‘Great Society’ and went on to become the President after Kennedy’s assassination (Roark, Johnson, Cohen, Stage & Hartmann, p.483). The promise of a Great Society involved ending the ever increasing poverty in the United States. The government also promised to open doors to minority ethnic groups particularly the Black community that was involved in incessant civil rights movements and protests. The passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 played a crucial role in eliminating the rampant racial discrimination and segregation that permeated the society of the US (Roark, Johnson, Cohen, Stage & Hartmann, p.484).
Feminist movements also broke the ceiling to advance for equal men and women’s rights. There were social welfare programs initiated throughout the US to cover vulnerable populations such as the poor, the elderly and the disabled. The social welfare programs offered incentives on medical care, education and housing (Roark, Johnson, Cohen, Stage & Hartmann, p.486). Various programs were initiated on to train young people vocational skills to alleviate the problems of unemployment. The Economic Act Opportunity Act of 1964 played a key role in initiating programs to foster economic development in the depressed regions and states of the United States. Higher Education Act improved the assistance of the federal government to the institutions of higher learning such as colleges and universities by putting infrastructure/buildings, programs and giving scholarships to students and advancing student loans (Roark, Johnson, Cohen, Stage & Hartmann, p.487).
Roark, J. L., Johnson, M. P., Cohen, P. C., Stage, S., & Hartmann, S. M. (2012). The
American Promise, Volume I: To 1877: A History of the United States (Vol. 1). Macmillan.