• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How successfull were JFKs social reforms?

Extracts from this document...


HOW SUCCESSFUL WAS J.F. KENNEDY'S SOCIAL REFORMS AND WHY DID THEY NOT ACHIEVE MORE? When Kennedy became president in 1961 a great deal was expected of him. He was a young, glamorous, rich and handsome war hero. America was in great need of social reform. 6.5% or 40 million "other Americans" were living below the poverty line. Among these people were the elderly, ethnic minorities, the underpaid and unemployed and people living in poor rural areas. These "other Americans" lived in slums and degraded areas with little or no health care, education and community togetherness. Kennedy's challenge was to lift these people out of poverty and into a better life. Kennedy's domestic priority was economic growth and improvement. Kennedy believed that a strong economy was essential for the USA and it's position in the world. Kennedy was highly concerned about the rise in unemployment and pursued many policies to combat it and create jobs. ...read more.


2 Kennedy also passed the Area Redevelopment Act. This Act gave grants and loans for training, development community facilities and help for depressed areas such as Appalachia. The government spent more than $500 million on various schemes and programmes. However this Act was highly criticised for not providing enough jobs considering the money that was spent. Cleaning up slums and adding community facilities such as youth centres, community centres and leisure centres would provide the people in these depressed communities with entertainment and hopefully drive them away from drugs, petty crimes and vandalism. Adding these facilities would also create jobs and tackle the issue of unemployment. His 1961 proposals for education were passed by the Senate but failed to get through the House. This unsuccessful bill proposed to give federal money to states for scholarships and buildings, with most of the money going to the poorer states. There had been very little spending on schools for 20 years and there was a shortage of teachers but none of this helped the Bill to succeed. ...read more.


Kennedy proposed many Bills for the improvement of America's poorer areas but they were simply rejected by the Senate and the House such as his housing and education policies. Kennedy also had a lack of support in The White House. They disliked him because of his glamour, good looks and his age. Therefore they objected to his ideas and undermined him. He also lacked support from the white house because of his narrow electoral victory. Many Southern Democrats disliked his Northern Liberalism and ambition and Kennedy did nothing to change this perception of him. Kennedy's social reforms achieved very little. This was partly due to his keen interest in foreign policy and somewhat lack of interest in social policy. However, his opposition in The White House stifled his success largely. Kennedy was assassinated in November 1963 and so he was only in office for just over two and a half years, a very small period of time to reform a country but more could have been done. Lindsay Forster ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level History of the USA, 1840-1968 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level History of the USA, 1840-1968 essays

  1. Theodore Roosevelt

    And they also increased the president's power in foreign matters. After this incident, many voters, journalists, and Congressmen criticized Roosevelt for his actions, likening the secession of Panama to the secession of the South from the Union. But Roosevelt made speech after speech, stressing the importance of the canal in maintaining and expanding US world power.

  2. Roosevelt(TM)s aims of relief, recovery and reform 1933-1945

    Others claimed that he was wasting millions of dollars of public money; however Hopkins view was that as long as money was circulating around the economy it must be doing some good. The CWA was disbanded in 1934, therefore 4million Americans found themselves unemployed yet again.

  1. Diversity Among The Ages.

    With the diversity of people form north to south and the difference in views on how this nation should be run made it difficult to establish how this nation would be set into stone. First they had to decide on what type of government if they were going to have

  2. Civil Rights Revision Cards 1945-68

    Event made him a national figure. Pushed for orderly protest. United and inspired the movement. Able to get messages across clearly to the masses and inspire them. Courageous (arrested and house bombed). Method of non-violent resistance attracted national support.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work