January 8, 2012
If you were to ask one hundred Americans what caused the civil war I think ninety five out of that one hundred would say slavery. The Civil War was about the rights of states. They felt they had the right to secede from the Union. This was primarily due to the states feeling there rights were being taken away. This feeling was similar to how the colonies felt. We do remember that resulted in the Revolutionary War. The south was being force to purchase products produced in the north. Those products were more expensive. The southern states felt they were losing political power.
Examples of U.S. Federal Government Authority Expansion
Congress was authorized in 1865 to eliminate slavery. They did so by creating the
Thirteenth Amendment. President Abraham Lincoln had already presented the Proclamation to
stop slavery as an executive order. The Thirteenth Amendment made that Proclamation the law
of the land.
The Political Structure showed the second part of the Proclamation granted Congress the
power to enforce through legislation what is considered the most important part. It gave them the
ability to take further action against the Ten Confederate States. This would also give the
government a way to introduce and pass further Proclamations in regards to the rights of slaves.
Social structures showed that full civil rights were still a long way off. The law and
public opinion are not always in alignment. While by law freed slaves and their descendants
were citizens and had the same rights as whites, there were still treated differently. Segregation
became institutionalized, under “Jim Crow” laws. The rise of the Ku Klux Klan in the early 20th
century brought violence against African Americans. They used force to get the change they
wanted. “Separate but Equal” was the norm until the civil right movement.
Economic structures naturally changed. Without slave labor, the way agricultural
business ran had to be changed, and profit margins sank until the market compensated. Wages
were poor, but African Americans were free to set up their own businesses, and to travel to
other regions to find work.
The Eighteenth Amendment written in 1919 prohibited the manufacturing, importing, and
exporting of alcoholic beverages. This is only one example of how the Federal governed started
using the power to restrict trade goods in the U.S. To do so many offices had to be created. The
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) assures the quality of food and pharmaceuticals, the
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) works to insure clean air and waters by restricting the
use of toxic material in manufacturing processes, and the Drug Enforcement Agency restricts
trafficking of illegal narcotics. The Eighteenth Amendment was later changed to the Twenty
Social structures changed, people found ways to work around the law. With the demand
for liquor continuing to increase the black market started. Moonshiners and big Mobster Bosses
created organized crime. The moonshiners manufactured the liquor and the Mobster Bosses
bought the liquor. The Mobsters then provided places where people could gather to consume the
illegal alcohol. Prohibition was in full speed.
The economic structures, showed two things that happened. First, breweries and
distilleries either went out of business or shifted into something else. Second, an underground
economy sprang into existence, flowing through the black market liquor business.
The Twentieth and Twenty-Fifth Amendments each changed the terms of presidential
succession. They changed such things as the date and time a newly elected President takes office.
The Twentieth Amendment gives the House of Representatives the...