Wednesday, November 13, 2019

To What Extent Was Jacksonian Democracy Democratic? Essays -- History

To What Extent Was Jacksonian Democracy Democratic?   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  During the administration of Andrew Jackson, the United States was a nation of change both politically and socially. American society was a society of opportunity. Americans felt that, given a chance, they could make a better life for themselves. This was the era of the common people, the era of democracy. Andrew Jackson appealed to the American people because he stood for values many regarded with favor. However democratic Jackson may seem, he was more tyrant-like than any of his predecessors. His major offerings to the nation included majority rule and a popular presidency, however offered no benefits to women, African Americans, nor Native Americans. Jacksonian Democracy was in no way democratic.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Before Jackson's time, voters expected public officials to use their own best judgment in electing. Under Jacksonian Democracy, the people came to believe that officials should act according to the demands of the people. To make government respond more directly to the popular will, state and local governments began to fill some positions such as judges, constables, and public surveyors by election rather than appointment. The terms of office were also shortened so that popular opinion had a more direct effect on the actions of elected officials. Thus, the government under Jackson became the people's government, although he retained a tight grasp, using his veto often.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  As new voters made demands on government, they learned the power of political organization. National issues became as much topics of conversation as local issues had always been. As national parties built stronger state and local ties, they began to rely upon a growing number of "professional politicians." These changes helped to initiate the spoils system. This practice of appointing people to government positions based on party loyalty and party service was not an entirely new development, but Jackson was the first to oust large numbers of government employees in order to appoint his followers to office. He argued that there should be a rotation in office. Some believed that the spoils system set a poor precedent. Jackson amplified presidential power by using the veto more than all previous presidents.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  On the "Women's Rights" issue, Jacksonian Democracy did nothing to further the female cause. Only in sparse st... ...ur government was built, the Constitution. He completely disregarded Marshall’s decree and sent the army in to force the Indians from their native homes in Georgia. This disgusting display of the broad sword of government is a disgrace to our nation’s legacy.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Tocqueville, a foreigner, came to the United States to study American prison reform, but was so disgusted with the way our society was and how our government functioned under Jackson that he changed the focus of his study to an analysis of democracy. He saw democracy by our example as â€Å"far from accomplishing all it projects with skill† and that â€Å"Democracy does not give people the most skillful government.† Jackson’s example of democracy was horrible.   Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚  Jacksonian Democracy seems to be a zeugma, two contrasting things put together to make a comparison. Andrew Jackson never had any intention of broadening our democracy, only to make his ends meet. Through the way he treated Native Americans, African Americans, women, and many other minority groups, Jackson showed his ignorance in fulfilling one of the most pressing tasks of the president, to represent the people. To no extent was Jacksonian Democracy democratic.

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