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Why is May 4 Significant Today

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Why is May 4, 1970, significant today?

After four decades, May 4, 1970, stands as a milestone in national history and world memory:

  • Demonstrations at Kent State marked the climax of a decade-long national student protest movement with roots in the civil rights movement.

  • What the world came to know as "Kent State" became one of the major symbolic events of the Vietnam War - the day the war came home.

  • The shootings changed public opinion about the war, from the U.S. Congress to the average American home.

  • The events of that day led to reform of armament policies and tactics of the National Guard.

  • The legal aftermath of May 4 set precedent in the U. S. Supreme Court.

  • May 4, 1970, shows the need to communicate effectively and affirms the importance to a democratic society of protecting the First Amendment.