The Hippie Movement began in the 1960s and was very influential on American politics, law and every day life. This was a time where predominantly the youth started reflecting on social values and experimentation then became the new social norm. A new counterculture was forming and those involved were not afraid of what people thought of them, and it fact many thought that those angered by what they were doing were jealous. The counterculture started as a youth movement and their ideas on all things political, social, cultural and every day values were much different then what American citizens had ever seen before.
This new wave of ideas and thoughts about America was a new subculture that was known as hippies. The hippies started out mainly in the Haight-Ashbury part of San Francisco and in the East Village of New York City. Hippies focused more on the cultural values in life rather then the political issues, although that was a big part of their, “Make Love, Not War” slogan. The hippies were antiwar and promoted peace and love for being the answer to all things. The hippie culture really gained a lot of public attention and was featured on mass media quite frequently. The biggest issues society had with the hippies were their public protests, meetings and discussions that would flood the streets.
Another thing was fear, in that parents all throughout the United States would have children who wanted to join the hippie movement. Many hippies dropped and of school and followed their own paths of discovering themselves through the use of psychedelic drugs such as marijuana or LSD. They referred to regular, hard working, American citizens as “squares”. The meaning behind this was that “squares” follow the rules that have been placed upon everyone, like the average nine to five job and the stresses that come along with it.
The hippies were also very easy to identify because of the way they looked and the clothes they wore. The way the hippies dressed were out of the social norm. They would wear ripped jeans, peace signs, flowers, and anything tie-dye. Also physically, hippies who were men usually had very long hair and beards. Rock and roll became the new hype and sex was a huge part of the movement as well because of it being a very natural and spiritual thing. Then one of the biggest differences between hippies and regular citizens was the fact that the hippies grew into traveling communities around their town. They lived in communes together and would frequently move out into the woods to become one with nature as they would do drugs and make love.
The hippie movement was something that laid an image during the 1960s through the 1970s on the youth and American culture. The hippie movement landed itself in American history textbooks for generation to talk about. It was a time like no other that changed the way, and or reevaluated, what we were doing as a country, and where we would be in the future.