In this chapter students read about the turmoil of the 1960s and 1970s. The Vietnam War created an atmosphere in which Americans questioned their leaders on foreign policy. Watergate created an atmosphere of distrust for all politicians. In this activity students will take a closer look at the scandal that led Richard Nixon to resign the presidency.
Students will visit the Watergate Info Web site. They will study a time line, read about the impact of the scandal on the media and journalists, and compare two speechesNixon’s actual resignation speech and the speech Nixon might have given had he decided not to resign. After answering several questions, students will write their own investigative story covering Watergate.
- The learner will be able to recognize causes and effects of significant events.
- The learner will be able to compare and contrast two primary sources.
- The learner will be able to apply information from the Web site to write a newspaper story.
Student Web Activity Answers
- Butterfield revealed that Nixon recorded all conversations and phone calls in his office.
- After Watergate, the media became more confident and aggressive. Teams of “investigative” reporters cropped up on newspapers around the world.
- Nixon said that with everything that had happened, he did not feel that he would have the support of Congress that would be needed to deal with difficult issues. He felt that his resignation was what was best for the nation.
- He might have reasoned that in the long run the government would be more stable if he did NOT resign, because it would demonstrate that a president could not be “pressured” to leave office. He could only be removed through the constitutional process of impeachment and trial.
- Students’ newspaper articles may vary.
Go To Student Web Activity