As I was watching the movie ALL THE KING'S MEN starring the late Broderick Crawford, I was thinking about J. Edgar Hoover. Mr. Hoover was the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation from 1924 until his death in 1977. Mr. Hoover implemented several investigatory reforms.
Mr. Hoover also implemented several investigations regarding the first "red scare" following World War II. His methodology became more succinctly ruthless as time progressed. Those who were suspected of being "anti-American" regarding their politics were placed on watch so to speak. These people included Marcus Garvey, Black activist; Emma Goldman, early feminist; and Felix Frankfurter, Supreme Court Justice, whom Mr. Hoover considered to be the most dangerous man in the United States.
Mr. Hoover established a very extensive surveillance network. He even become more powerful than the presidents he was supposed to serve. In 1956, he became frustrated by the Supreme Court's decision to limit the Justice Department's ability to prosecute those based solely upon their political beliefs. So he insitituted COINTELPRO which allow his agency the abillity to use less than ethical means to prosecute such people.
Both Presidents Truman and Kennedy wanted to dismiss Hoover from his directorship; however, each realized that doing such would be a stupid political move! In the 1960s, those who were perceived to be radical and a so-called threat to the American way of life were placed under strict surveillance. These people included civil rights activist Martin Luther King, the Black Panthers, and John Lennon.
Mr. Hoover was never loathe to exercise his power as FBI Director. He was admired by some as well as hated and feared by others. He exemplifed the premise that absolute power corrupts! He was the most powerful FBI director in history. There has never been a director like Mr. Hoover since his death! Presidents answered to him instead of the other way around! What do YOU think about the late J. Edgar Hoover?
Copyright © 2017 HubPages Inc. and respective owners.
Other product and company names shown may be trademarks of their respective owners.
HubPages® is a registered Service Mark of HubPages, Inc.
HubPages and Hubbers (authors) may earn revenue on this page based on affiliate relationships and advertisements with partners including Amazon, Google, and others.