The 1960's started out being the "New Frontier," with a young president in office. President John F. Kennedy was the inspiration for this new decade. The 60's brought in all sorts of change here in the US and around the world. The sights and sounds of our nation would change forever.
In the south, the Jim Crow Laws were being challenged. Negroes in the South wanted equality and justice. We wanted our fair share of this great nation. We were tired of being treated like second class citizens, we were tired of riding the back of the bus, and we were tired of being excluded from voting. The civil rights movement went to Washington and there we demanded equal rights and justice for all men and women.
There was a war in southeast Asia, in a small country called Vietnam. Why were young Americans dying over there? What was this war all about? There were many questions raised about this war, and few answers that satisfied the American public. There were protests and demonstrations. The public cried, "Make Love Not War."
During the 60's there came a new sound, with dances to go along with the new sounds. We started a rhythm rebellion. San Francisco became the center of all this groovy stuff. We had love-ins, sit-ins, happenings and flower children. We turned on and tuned out. While in the 50's we rocked and rolled, in the 60's we just rocked. There was a little funk in the rock and even some rhythm and blues. We had Woodstock and Wattstack. Our hair was suddenly "Natural." We were no longer Negroes, we were young, gifted and Black.
By Tallulah Dancier