Subversive Historian – 08/24/09

The Communist Control Act

Back in the day on August 24th, 1954, the Congress of the United States passed the Communist Control Act into law. President Dwight D. Eisenhower remarked upon signing the bill saying that it was “designed to place into the hands of our law enforcement agencies, better weapons for combating the Community menace.” Though Senator Joseph McCarthy had been disgraced prior to the act’s passage, there still existed an anti-communist hysteria among the political establishment. It was in such a climate that the legislation’s text declared that its purpose was to “outlaw the Communist party” and “prohibit members of Communist organizations from serving in certain representative capacities.”

The language of the Communist Control Act, however, was much more about giving the state the ability to harass and contain members of the party. It also allowed for the deeming of other organizations as infiltrated by Communist agents in order to destabilize them.

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