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Andrew Jackson DBQ

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Lily Thomas Ms. Scott Honors US History Period 4 15 November 2016 A Demagogue in Disguise Andrew Jackson, the 7th president of the United States, was undoubtedly an immoral demagogue who abused his position of power to promote his own selfish interests and disregard the rights of many. One of the most notable moments during his time of leadership was the “Trail of Tears”, or forced removal and relocation of all Cherokee tribes on American soil. The Indian Removal Act, passed in 1830, ultimately caused the death of 4,000+ Cherokee people (Doc 4, par. 3). This historic event was nothing short of ethnic cleansing, a disgusting and hateful act. After the passage of the Indian Removal Act, Jackson proceeded to disregard the rules of his own proposal:…show more content…
Due to his authoritative status, however, many American citizens at the time saw him as a democratic hero whose sole purpose was to reach economic and social equality. In Chapter 7 of A People’s History of the United States, historian Howard Zinn describes Andrew Jackson as “the most aggressive enemy of the Indians in early American history”, and applauds him on the land he acquired during his presidency (Doc 3, par. 7). Zinn completely disregards the negative impact that white settlement had on Native American communities and incorrectly portrays Jackson as a hero who defeated an enemy. He fails to recognize the innocence of the targeted native tribes, as most Indians were not a threat to American society. Similarly, in Jackson: The President Who Made Us Who We Are, an article written in 2008, Jon Meacham argues that while President Jackson made a few devastating mistakes, his “love for democracy” and goal of “social justice” justified his racist and intolerant acts (Doc 12, par. 5). Unfortunately, Jackson’s positive accomplishments are far outnumbered by his wrong-doings. Despite his best efforts, his goals of peace, justice, and equality were not realized within his
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