How did Americans attitude toward race affect Americans' involvement in overseas expansion from 1877-1914?

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American attitudes regarding race in the late 1800s and early 1900s served as a motivation and justification for overseas expansion. If we look back to the 1840s and America's era of westward expansion across North America, we see the appearance of the term "manifest destiny." Manifest destiny was the belief that it was God's will for the United States to expand across the continent and to spread American values to those they encountered along the way. With the idea of manifest destiny came the belief that American values were superior to those of natives. This mentality carried over into the Age of American Imperialism on which this question focuses.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, there was a belief in the United States of Anglo-Saxon superiority. The belief involved the idea that English-speaking peoples were superior to others. In 1885, Josiah Strong published a book titled Our Country. In Our Country, he argued that not only were Anglo-Saxon peoples superior to others, but that it was God's will for them to dominate the globe. With that, he felt that they also had a responsibility to spread Christianity around the globe and thus serve to "civilize" non-Christians and non–Anglo-Saxons in the process.

The ethnocentrism and beliefs of racial superiority that existed in the United States at the end of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries served as motivation and justification for colonial expansion overseas. These beliefs removed guilt from Americans, and even created a feeling that what they were doing was in fact beneficial to those they colonized.

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Americans' attitudes towards race during this time affected the country's involvement in overseas expansion in important ways.  It allowed Americans to believe that they deserved to take control of various overseas areas.  At the same time, it caused some Americans to oppose imperialism.

Americans of the time by and large felt that people like the Hawaiians and the Filipinos were racially inferior.  Because of this, they felt no compunctions about doing things like overthrowing the legal Hawaiian government of Queen Liliuokalani or fighting the Filipinos to prevent them from becoming independent after the Spanish-American War.  In this way, racial attitudes led to support for expansion.

At the same time, these attitudes could lead to opposition to imperialism.  Some Americans did not believe that it would be good for the country if large numbers of non-whites were taken into the country when their lands were annexed.  Such people did not want to hurt the US by making more people of inferior races part of the US.

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