The Growth of Government from 1877 Through 1920

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The growth of government from 1877 through 1920 was the worst example of “America the great exception” because every time the government took one step forward toward making America better, it would inevitably take 5 steps backward. The Transportation Revolution in the 1800s, sparked up industrialization and the building of railroads that stimulated every other industry causing an economic boom known as the Gilded Age. From the outside, America seemed like the place to go to make all your dreams come true. But in reality, in was an era of serious social problems mainly caused by an economy with a free market policy, low tariffs, low taxes, less spending, and a hands-off government. This type of economy would eventually lead to the development of monopolies. These monopolies would then, in turn, lead to worker uprisings ‒caused by the suppression of unions created mostly by unskilled workers‒ that would contribute to the rapid rise and downfall of America. An example of this suppression is the Homestead Strike of 1892; due to hostility created by the unions, the employer fired all the workers, and rehired them on the basis that there would not be any more unions. After the workers started working again, the conditions were still unbearable, so the workers shut down the facility. The police got involved, the workers were pushed back, and the facility was reopened union free. On the east coast people were also being taken advantage of by the government. As a result of the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, the government began giving out land grants ‒through the Homestead Act of 1862‒ for Americans to live on and farm; the only problem was that another culture was already living on the land: the Sioux Nation. After the S... ... middle of paper ... ...gative impact is the reaction of the government when the stock market crashed. While the American people suffered from extreme unemployment and servere hunger, all the government did was initiate "Repatriation" campaigns to send undocumented immigrants, mostly Mexican American, back to their home country. Hoover, president at the time, refused to create any projects designed to help American citizens get out of the "Hooverville" conditions they were forced to live in. The government even refused to give WWI veterans the bonus they were promised prematurely in order for them to survive. Overall, the growth of the American government should have complimented American culture. Instead, -because of mass corruption, the influence big business, and foreign policy- the enormous growth of the federal government has hindered the great success America was meant to achieve.

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