Early Life of Lyndon B. Johnson
On August 27, 1908, Central Texas saw the birth of Lyndon B. Johnson. As a child, he was no stranger to poverty and injustice; in fact, he himself is a victim. He got himself to Texas State University- San Marcos, then known as the Southwest Texas State Teachers College. He also became a teacher to Mexican students, further learning about the different struggles they continue to face in America. He also served the Navy, taking the position of lieutenant commander and winning a Silver Star merit, during the Second World War. In 1934, he married Claudia “Lady Bird” Taylor.
Johnson’s Long and Winding Political Career
Johnson had a long and consistent career in politics. He spent six terms at the House of Representatives before becoming a full- pledged senator in 1948. Lyndon Johnson is actually the youngest Minority Leader in the entire history of American Senate. A year after he was elected minority leader, the Democrats acquired majority of seats; he subsequently became the Majority Leader.
During the 1960 elections, Lyndon Johnson ran alongside John F. Kennedy as his vice president. When Kennedy was assassinated, he assumed presidency and became the 36th president of the United States.
Building on Kennedy’s Vision
Joseph Lyndon envisioned nothing less than ‘A Great Society’ for both the present and future American generations. He used his first years as a president to enact comprehensive laws and programs focusing on collective security and social welfare packages. He also concentrated his efforts to combat Communism in Vietnam.
A revised New Deal program was passed by the House of Representatives in 1937, owing to the extensive lobbying of his wife Claudia Taylor. After which, he followed Kennedy’s vision to cut taxes and to create a new civil rights bill that will serve as the foundation of American welfare. To quote Lyndon: “[I envision] “to build a great society, a place where the meaning of man’s life matches the marvels of man’s labor.”
Setting Lyndon’s Personal Mark
Come election time, Lyndon Johnson won the presidential seat, garnering 61 percent of the votes. His win was regarded as the largest margin in American politics.
The Great Society agenda took top priority under his renewed administration. The first quarter of 1965 was dedicated to improve education, healthcare, insurance, and housing of American people through the Medicare amendment to the Social Security Act. Johnson also made it a point that crime levels decreased. Laws promoting universal suffrage were also enacted. The influx of laws passed by the Congress demonstrated the cooperative relationship betwen the legislative and executive departments of the government.
Johnson also upgraded the country’s efforts in space explorations. Through his administration, man was able to set foot to moon. Indeed, this was a huge progress and a turning point in the history of man.
Johnson’s Personal turned Political Advocacies
It was also during Johnson’s administration that discrimination and Vietnam Communism posed serious threats to America. Although Johnson has been rallying for new anti- poverty ant- segregation laws, violence in black suburbs did not stop.
American forces continued to be deployed in Vietnam, in account of the ongoing war. Earlier negotiations failed so Johnson ordered to partially stop the bombing in Vietnam. He also dropped his nomination for re-election to devote his full efforts to close the Vietnam War.
Johnson did not live to see the fruits of his efforts. He suffered from a heart attack and died on January 22, 1973 in the same state where he was born: