Tin soldiers and Nixon coming – 4 dead in Ohio

Protest at the 1972 Republican National Convention in Miami Beach, FL. Photo: Langelle

Protest at the 1972 Republican National Convention in Miami Beach, FL.      Photo: Langelle

Today is the 45th anniversary of the Kent State Massacre, when the Ohio National Guard killed 4 students during a protest against the war in Vietnam and the invasion of Cambodia. We should never forget. I know I will not.

Today, once again we see the National Guard in our streets, called into action to quell protests.  It is therefore even more important that we remember the results this had in the past.

Jerry M. Lewis and Thomas R. Hensley wrote  in a paper “THE MAY 4 SHOOTINGS AT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: THE SEARCH 
FOR HISTORICAL ACCURACY” [1] :

On May 4, 1970 members of the Ohio National Guard fired into a crowd of Kent State University demonstrators, killing four and wounding nine Kent State students. The impact of the shootings was dramatic. The event triggered a nationwide student strike that forced hundreds of colleges and universities to close. H. R. Haldeman, a top aide to President Richard Nixon, suggests the shootings had a direct impact on national politics. In The Ends of Power, Haldeman (1978) states that the shootings at Kent State began the slide into Watergate, eventually destroying the Nixon administration. Beyond the direct effects of May 4th, the shootings have certainly come to symbolize the deep political and social divisions that so sharply divided the country during the Vietnam War era.

[1] PUBLISHED IN REVISED FORM BY THE OHIO COUNCIL FOR THE SOCIAL STUDIES REVIEW, VOL 34, NUMBER 1 (SUMMER, 1998) PP. 9-21