Social Effects of Pearl Harbor

Social Effects of Pearl Harbor

There were numerous social effects of Pearl Harbor attack. Pearl Harbor attack refers to the bombing of the navy ships and army installations in the Pearl Harbor by the Japanese aircraft on 7th December 1971. During this attack, almost 3,000 Americans lost their lives. The attack also left six battleships destroyed or unseaworthy. It also damaged most ground planes. Due to this attack the air and naval strength of the U.S in the Pacific was crippled severely. The attack had great impact on America because before this incident, America was in depression.

What were the major social effects of Pearl Harbor attack?

  • People were terrified

The immediate social effect of the attack on Pearl Harbor was terror feeling among the Americans. People were scared with most of them being worried about their security and safety. Many Americans were afraid of the Japanese Americans with whom they lived together. The government also feared that they would be involved in an inside operation. Therefore, to ensure the safety of the Americans, the Japanese Americans were put in camps.

  • Disruption of social life

Social lives of the Americans were disrupted. Apart from the Japanese Americans who were put in camps, some Americans lost their jobs for several months. There were also American men who volunteered to go into the World War Two. Women made stamps for donating to the army for more food and other war essentials. Men who did not go into war had to engage in making weapons, tanks and planes. Thus, people had little time to socialize. Those living in the harbor were forced to leave their homes and run for their safety. Women who initially engaged in clerical work and homemaking had to fill assembly lines in order to replace men who went to serve in the army.

  • Deaths

Many people died during the attack. Many African-Americans died leaving their families to live in fear without knowing whether they would be next. However, they had a chance to serve in the defense of the country where they were given high paying jobs. Many people lost their loved ones as they watch the destruction of the harbor.

  • People became more united

Following the Pearl Harbor attack, the Americans realized that their country was not safe the way they thought before the attack. As such, they joined forces in repairing the damaged harbor and in safeguarding their country. This means that the attack acted as a unifying factor for the Americans.

  • Social awakening

There were rumors about the attack but they were not taken seriously. This is partly because there was no centralized, established and professional intelligence unit in the U.S. The attack on Pearl Harbor acted as an awakening call. The United States realized that there was a need for a centralized intelligence organization that would have dealt with such rumors.

For how long did the social effects of Pearl Harbor attack last?

The social effects of this attack were long lasting and they shape America even today. This is because the attack affected most Americans in different ways. Some lost their loved ones or people along their family lines. At that time, the attack caused widespread panic and psychological shock among the Americans. Many people experience the same feeling today when they remember the effect of the attack and what followed. On 8th December, immediately after the attack, congress declared a war on Japan. Other countries like Great Britain, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and later Netherlands, India, Poland, France, Nicaragua, Honduras, Panama, and Belgium joined the war. This means that the effects that the attack on Pearl Harbor had on the society lasted for quite a long time.

There are also books written and online publications about the attack. These serve as historical publications that remind generations about the attack on the Pearl Harbor and its effects on the society.

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