Since the colonization of America, there have been tensions and confrontations between white settlers and Native Americans over territory and civilization. President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act in 1830, allowing him to communicate with Native American tribal leaders in order to negotiate their voluntary relocation to Federal reservations west of the Mississippi River. When several tribes refused to relocate, the conflict turned violent and was conducted through the use of militias and military force. Due to this violent conflict and the subsequent relocation of hundreds of thousands of Native Americans, relations between Native Americans and the United States Government have since been strained. Native Americans continually experience higher rates of poverty, fewer opportunities for educational advancement, higher rates of physical and mental illness, as well as general discrimination through social systems and policy. Strained relationships, societal, and economic opportunities have weakened and are less readily available to Native Americans, all factors that can be traced back to the Indian Removal Act.
History of the Indian Removal Act
The original intention of the Indian Removal Act was to relocate five Indian tribes - the …show more content…
It is very difficult to prove racism as a driving factor of an issue, but when reading Jackson’s address to Congress regarding the issue of Indian removal, it is evident that there was prejudice and discrimination present in this context. Jackson calls the Indians “savage hunters”, impediments to “white settlement”, and hopes that they will “cast off their savage habits and become an interesting, civilized, Christian community.” Throughout Jackson’s address, it is clear that he believes Colonial settlements and cities are more important to the nation than any Indian matters, and he attempts to lessen the severity of an enormous relocation