Various people from the late nineteenth century held diverse opinions on political issues of the day. The source of this diversity was often due to varying backgrounds these people experienced. Three distinct groups of people are the farming class, the political bosses, and the immigrants, who poured into the country like an unstoppable flood. These groups of people also represented the social stratification of the new society, which had just emerged from rapid industrialization. These three groups had large differences in many aspects such as power, amount of money, and influence in political events of the day. The political boss dominated local city governments and pretended to be Robin Hoods of industrial society, but in reality were just petty thieves, attempting to earn large sums of money. The men involved in agricultural work were in a precarious situation. They experienced countless forms of natural disasters that constantly beset them and made it a formidable task to grow crops in such a hostile environment. Crops sold for ridiculously low amounts of money, and subsistence was a challenge, a challenge that many failed to overcome. The immigrants faced some of the greatest obstacles out of any class at the time. They were discriminated against by the “native-born” Americans and had to face sharp ethnic prejudice. Many immigrants were unskilled laborers and nearly all lived in poverty. These three diverse groups lived very differently from each other and held diverse views on important issues of the time period. The new emerging modes of thought contributed to the rise of new political organizations, such as the People’s or Populist party.
The farmers faced tremendous...
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...rked as unskilled laborers in the new factories. Most were poor, disgruntled, and found that America was not what they had expected when they left their native countries. The city bosses provided aid to these immigrants and then gained their political support. They unfairly took advantages of the immigrants to gain power, which helped them to gain the money they were seeking. The immigrants had a difficult life because most of them were crowded into ghettos and slums. They received low wages and faced dangerous and unhealthy working conditions daily. Concentration increased and living quarter size proportionately decreased. The immigrants experienced poor sanitation and contagious diseases and most did not have any plumbing or ventilation. They had a difficult and sad life, and many were more happy in their oppressive homelands than industrialized America.
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