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National Student Reaction

The Kent State killings intensified the wave of protest that had already been occurring on campuses nationwide, directly involving nine million students in protests. The ensuing level of unrest was striking. The National Guard was brought onto 21 universities in sixteen states, and in five states officials declared a state of emergency in public universities (Connery 88). According to historian Melvin Small, between May 4 and May 8 350 campus strikes were called, 536 colleges shut down, and 73 reported significant violence in their protests (Levy 160). ROTC buildings that served as army recruitment centers on campuses were burned on an average of four per day during the first half of May (Connery 88). The weekend of May 7-9 between 75 and 100,000 people gathered in Washington DC to protest and “spirited war demonstrations erupted even on staid and conservative campuses that had never witnessed disturbances before (Levy 160).”

National Student Reaction