Subversive Historian – 05/04/09

The Kent State Shootings

Back in the day on May 4th, 1970, Ohio National Guardsmen opened fire on Vietnam War protesters on the campus of Kent State University. The volley of sixty-seven bullets in thirteen seconds claimed the lives of four students that day and injured nine others. The National Guard had been called to Kent as the Nixon administration’s bombing of Cambodia had become a focal point in the anti-war movement. Students held a rally against the widening of the Vietnam War on May 1st and promised to assemble once more on the campus of Kent State on May 4th. Between that time, a disturbance in downtown Kent took place followed by an ROTC building that was set to razed being engulfed by flames. It was unclear who was behind such acts over the weekend. The National Guard nevertheless entered the picture and seized control of the campus banning all rallies.

At noon on May 4th, students gathered despite the ban, when the National Guardsmen first shot tear gas banisters at the protesters to disperse them. Of course, as history goes on to show, they turned to their more deadly arsenal next…

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One response to “Subversive Historian – 05/04/09

  1. Sixty-seven bullets! They were shooting — what? — machine guns?

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