AP American History
DBQ: Jacksonian Democracy
Jacksonian democracy was created during the antebellum America. The Jackson democrats made an attempt to grant power to the lower classes while decreasing the influence of the rich and potent. The Jacksonian democrats viewed themselves as saviors of the common people and ruled by the means of a powerful executive branch who attempted to destroy aristocracy in America. In reality, they were typically very wealthy, they disregarded the capability of the federal government, and they desired equality only for the white man. The Jacksonian's view of themselves was pompous because of their political views, their animosity towards minorities, and their economic policies.
Although viewed as defenders of all common men, Jacksonian democrats shunned minorities by only assisting white men. In fact, The Diary of Philip Hone (Doc E) describes the insurrections and disturbances that broke out throughout the nation by minorities. The minorities received no aid from the efforts that the Jacksonian democrats made to increase equality, and as a result many rebelled. Jackson's brutality in his Indian removal practices such as the Trial of Tears, (Doc G), is another example minorities receiving no aid. Fearful of aggravating southern voters, Jacksonians also made no attempt to provide egalitarian efforts towards slaves. Women were also ignored in the Jacksonian's view of equality. Clearly the Jacksonian Democrats believed that although "all men are created equal" (Declaration of Independence, Doc A), a man's equality did not stay with him through life.
Although Jacksonians attempted to assist whites through economic means, many of their policies failed. As multiple advancements resulted in a huge increase in population the old economy was replaced by cash-crop agriculture and capitalist manufacturing. A split between the industrializing, urban North, agrarian, rural South, and the expanding West was forming. The Jacksonians...
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