AP American 1980 DBQ
Andrew Jackson’s presidency from 1829 to 1837 the decision to remove the Cherokee Indians to land west of the Mississippi River was made. This was more a change of the national policy rather than a reformulation of it. Since the Spanish came to the New World in the 1500’s, the Natives, were there. Starting with Washington’s administration in the 1790’s, the United States’ policy was to civilize the Natives and assimilate them into society. Under the administration of Andrew Jackson, who was in favor of Western speculation, the Natives were forced to move from their homeland. There was a change, not a reformulation regarding political ideas and the ideas of the American Constitution that were part of the decision made by Jackson. Before Jackson the Native Americans were “allowed” their land but Jackson changed this policy for a racist agenda. The Indian Removal Act of 1830, which evicted the Native Americans, was a change that had not been in place with the Native Americans before (Docs. A, H). The treaties brought about no benefit. Before Jackson’s administration there had been agreements made between the Cherokees and the federal government (Doc. E). Jackson changed the idea of having treaties by saying the “treaties with Indians are an absurdity” (Doc. H). Instead of compromise Jackson wanted domination, a clear change in policy. The Intercourse Act, a constitutional law, protected the rights of the Indians (Doc. D). In the case of Cherokee Nation V. Georgia the Cherokees lost the case and therefore lost their protection. However, it can be argued that even if the Cherokees had won the case, Jackson still would have removed them from their land. Jackson had no respect for John Marshall’s decisions and, therefore, showed little respect for the Constitution. The Native Americans were no way a threat to the U.S., nor were they savages. They were like the Americans in that they owned nice houses (Doc. L), were educated, farmed, many were...
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