Manifest Destiny

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Pauline Lopez
12/3/12
Mexican-American War

Similar to the case for and against Manifest Destiny, the case for and against the war with Mexico is controversial. The Mexican-American war can be looked at many ways: such as a war for more land, more slavery, and economic expansion. Many people believed that expansion was needed because of the growing population. Polk a proponent of Manifest destiny desired to expand and therefore supported the war. War with Mexico offered the chance to acquire Texas and California. John Harmanson stated in a speech, “It is not an ‘unjust, unconstitutional, and damnable war,’ or one that could have been avoided with honor. […] By insult and defiance. Nothing but war would do her. Let her have it, then, to her heart’s content.” (5) Thus, the country is bound to go to war and therefore expand. Many people felt that expanding westward was the best possible thing to do. Many agreed with Robert Johanssen. He stated, “To extend the boundaries of the United States was to extend the area of freedom,” (5) Expanding land would give many opportunities allowing many to fulfill their dreams. On the other hand, many rejected the Mexican-American war because it portrayed the United States aiming at the conquest of a vulnerable nation. Ulysses S. Grant said, “It was an instance of a republic following the bad example of European monarchies, in not considering justice in their desire to acquire additional territory.” He felt that over expansion was dangerous for the country because it is following the footsteps of other nations that are overpowering. Expanding west also brought the topic of slavery. Would Texas and California be slave states or free states? Expanding west was an attempt to expand slavery therefore arousing many people. There would be an imbalance with the North and the South. While many of the northerners were for the expansion of slavery, many southerners opposed it. Charles Sumner declared, “Fresh markets of human beings are...
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