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African Americans In The Post

analytical Essay
1487 words
1487 words
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Jefferson Davis stated in the pre-Civil War years to a Northern audience, “You say you are opposed to the expansion of slavery... Is the slave to be benefited by it? Not at all. It is not humanity that influences you in the position which you now occupy before the country,'; (Davis, The Irrepressible Conflict, 447). The Northerners had not freed the slaves for moral issues; the white majority did not have anything but its own economic prosperity on its mind. The African Americans gained their emancipation and new rights through the battling Northern and Southern factions of the United States, not because a majority of the country felt that slavery possessed a ‘moral urgency’. As the years passed and the whites began to reconcile, their economic goals rose to the forefront of their policy, while racism spread throughout the country and deepened in the South. Even with all of the good intentions and ideals expressed in the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, blacks watched as their freedom disintegrated through the late 19th Century as a result of the Supreme Court decisions that limited the implications of the new amendments. After the passage of these amendments, two of the three branches of government disconnected themselves with the issue of black civil rights. Following Grant’s unenthusiastic approach to protecting blacks in the South, the executive branch gradually made its position on the issue clear in 1876. (Zinn, 199) When Hayes beat Tilden in the presidential election by promising to end the Reconstruction in the South, it was evident that the White House would no longer support any calls for the protection of blacks. The compromise of 1877 brought Hayes to office, but “doomed the black man to a second class citizenship that was to be his lot for nearly a century afterward,'; (Davis, 160). The Radical Republican’s in Congress, who were responsible for freeing the blacks, were also responsible for letting their voices become silenced. This occurred as the other, more industrial, interests of the broad based party dominated their platform; leaving the blacks to face the wrath of the Southerners. A final blow to the hopes for national protection of African American civil rights was dealt with The Force Bill of 1890. In this bill, the Senate objected to the idea of... ... middle of paper ... ...e Radical Republicans had embarked on a costly Reconstruction plan and set up legislation meant to protect black civil rights, the blacks did not thrive. The Supreme Court successfully chipped away at any progress made by the Republicans. Rulings made in the later half of the 19th Century reduced the scope of the 13th, 14th and 15th amendments, and lead to the further subordination of the Black race by Southern State governments. Southern whites were allowed to set up a system that kept blacks as prisoners without any say on their future. The social practices, including segregation, curfews, violence and disfranchisement that the Blacks suffered left them anything but free as the 20th Century dawned. The amendments to the Constitution had been made, but the whites did not take the time after 1866 to abolish the prejudice that came with slavery, giving testimony to theory that the North engaged in the Civil War for economic, not moral reasons. The application of racism after the Civil War was just as rampant, but much more subtle than before the Civil War, making it much more difficult to confront, and resulting in a century of unequal education, inferior treatment and segregation.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how the northerners had not freed the slaves for moral issues; the white majority did not have anything but its own economic prosperity on its mind. blacks watched as their freedom disintegrated through the late 19th century
  • Explains how two of the three branches of government disconnected themselves with the issue of black civil rights. the force bill of 1890 was a sign that congress and its northern constituents had finally lost interest in the cause.
  • Analyzes how the'separate but equal' doctrine spread like wildfire across the south. the southerners jumped at the opportunity to introduce jim crow legislation.
  • Explains how the supreme court limited the implications of the 15th amendment in 1870 in us vs. reese.
  • Explains that african americans were freed from servitude after the northern victory in the civil war. the supreme court chipped away at any progress made by the republicans.
  • Analyzes how the southern blacks were held hostage by white supremacists.
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