The end of World War II put a cease to the tyranny of one man, but with the end of this struggle came the beginning of another. This would be the struggle against the Soviet Union and the spread of communism. The effects that this struggle would have on the American society were many. Two of the major ones were trying to stop the Communist Party from spreading its influence in and outside the United States and giving the citizens, a sense of hope despite the fact that nuclear war loomed in the shadows. .
During the early period of the Red Scare and the Cold War, it was very important for the American government to prevent the spread of Communism both inside and outside of the United Sates. Above all the American government was determined to prevent the spread of the Communist Party in the United States. This determination would give rise to the most feared man of the time, Joseph McCarthy, and thus the age of McCarthyism would be born. The fear of communism spreading would also make Congress take some extreme measures to keep communists out of the Federal Government. Joseph McCarthy was an unknown Senator until February 9, 1950 when he announced to the Women's Republican Club that he had a list of communists who were working for the State Department (Schreker p.72). This speech would mark the beginning of a witch-hunt that would last for many years to come.
During the time of McCarthy's witch-hunt, many people were accused of being a communist, but very few where put on trial. There were two main reasons for the lack of trials. One being that many chose to avoid public humiliation by naming names, or rating out other communists that they knew. The second reason was the way the government found out that a person was a communist was illegal or top secret. Either way the government cold not allow the American people to know they were breaking the law or the real communist threats their means for hunting them down.