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Andrew Jackson's politicsWhat grade would you give Andrew Jackson based on...

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k9dedicated | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 2, 2010 at 11:26 AM via web

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Andrew Jackson's politics

What grade would you give Andrew Jackson based on his:
-democratic ideals
-patriotism
-campaign practices
-suffrage
-spoils system

Why would you give him that grade instead of another grade. (The grade should be based on evidence, not opinions)

Thanks

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 2, 2010 at 11:30 AM (Answer #1)

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For patriotism, I would give him an A.  I base this largely on his conduct during the nullification crisis.  He stood up for the Union against the people who wanted more of a loose confederation.

For democratic ideal, I would give him a B.  He was definitely supportive of the idea of popular rule.  This shows up in things like his killing of the Bank of the US because he thought that's what the people wanted. But he was less in favor of things like free speech -- allowed the gag rule in Congress and kept abolitionist material out of the mails.

 

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geosc | College Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

Posted March 11, 2010 at 3:51 PM (Answer #2)

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I give Jackson the grade of A, but with reservations.

Democratic ideals: Jackson believed every free, adult male should vote.  He did not call for woman suffrage, but that was not an issue in his day.  He did not call for freeing the slaves; some were doing so in his day, but those who wanted to free the slaves did not want to give the free black men the vote.  I do not like democracy; I believe the common man and woman are too easily brainwashed to do the bidding of Corporate America and its political lackeys. But Jackson's beliefs and actions for democracy were very much compatible with his time and place.--A.

Patriotism:  Jackson commanded the American military forces in the Southern Department during the War of 1812.  He invaded Spanish Florida and hung two British agents there.  When Florida was acquired by the U.S., Jackson was the first Territorial Governor of Florida.  He served as U. S. Senator.  He was President of the United States.  He once offered a toast: "Our Federal Union: It Must Be Preserved."--A.

Campaign practices: I don't know much about Jackson's campaign practices.  He, or his campaign machinery organized huge rallies and marches by the common man featuring posters of Jackson both as a general and as a common farmer.  He won the Presidency of the U.S., so he must have done something right.--A.

Suffrage:  Jackson was on the forefront of suffrage for all adult men, and, so far as I know,there was little or no call by anyone at that time to give the vote to women or slaves.  But in my opinion, no one should vote unless his life-experiences have educated him/her to understand how government policies impact the country for better or for worse. But I cannot fail him, because he was following the trend for the time in which he lived, and trends are sometimes hard or impossible to oppose.--A.

Spoils system:  Jackson's philosophy was "To the party in power go the spoils."  That is to say, all of the government jobs were given to fellow democrats.  There is something to be said for this.  The American voters elect a particular man to be president because he and his party make particular promises, and it is easier for them to fulfill the promises if the people in government jobs also support the promises.  Most people now-days say the spoils system is bad, but maybe they are wrong.--A.

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