Chapter 21 • Politics: Domestic and Foreign • The Great Migrations or the “Southern Exodus” • Cuba and American Imperialism
Political Paralysis • Political Stalemate • Margins of victory in presidential elections were very close (never a true mandate of the electorate) • Voter turnout: nearly 80 percent of eligible voters turned out (people took voting seriously) • The Parties • Ethnic and religious factors helped to shape party alignment (usually based on platform philosophy) • Third political parties rallied around a single cause • (whether it be labor, socialism, or anarchists—today’s libertarians—Ralph Nader etc …)
Political Stalemate • Throughout the Progressive—Victorian Era republicans dominated the White House; (1868-1912, democrats won twice--Cleveland) • Democrats dominated both houses of Congress; and state legislatures • Each sought distinguishing political issues so as not to be confused with the other party.
James A. Garfield • (1831-1881) A Republican party leader who served as President in 1881. • Tainted reputation because of his connection with the Credit Mobilier scandal; • Also marred because of his unorthodox acceptance of a consultant fee from the DeGloyer paving contract Co. Assassinated by Charles J. Guiteau—disgruntled office seeker.
Ulysses S. Grant • Much maligned—right or wrong? • General of the Union Armies during Civil War • President from 1869-1877; • A Republican—rampant corruption; administration may have been the most corrupt in American History.
Grant • Basically a honest man; believed the people serving under him were ethical and honest; • Here he is held accountable; “Whiskey Ring” Whiskey distiller in Louisville Ky. • Involved his private secretary Gen. Orville Babcock ($1.2 million)
James G. Blaine • (1830-1893) A very powerful Republican during the 1870s and 1880s; Congressman 1862-1867; Speaker of the House 1868-1876; • Failed twice to receive Republican nomination for President; 1880 won the nomination but lost to Grover Cleveland
James Gillespie Blaine • Political cartoonists had a field day with Blaine; • Thomas Nast (did all the Boss Tweed and Tammany cartoons)features Blaine here begging for Public forgiveness for his many political transgressions.
Grover Cleveland • One of few politicians at the time that had no Civil War record; • Gov. New York 1882; • 1884-1888 President; • 1892 once again elected president; able executive; strong in foreign policy; reactionary in domestic policy; part of a very nasty “mudslinging” political campaign in 1884.
1884 campaign • The Cleveland campaign juxtaposed his clean civil record against crime and his support for social reform Vs. • The blotchy corrupt career of James G. Blaine; • Blaine’s campaign retaliated with Mudslinging and innuendo—some true, some false. • Cleveland confessed the true accusations and denied the false—people saw him as flawed, but honest.
Pertinent Issues • Mugwumps—Republicans who bolted the republican party and voted for Cleveland; today a “Mugwump” is an independent voter. • “Bloody Shirt”– Each side blamed the other for the Civil War; • Pendleton Act—or Civil Service Reform; • McKinley Tariff—protectionists for American industry at the expense of Southern/Western agriculture.
Jim Crow and the Great Exodus Chatteled slavery had ended with the great Emancipation; Unfortunately something more insidious had replaced it—a De Facto slavery called Jim Crow; As reconstruction faded, and the influx of European immigration, America turned to a more racially divided nation than before the Civil War. Jim Crow is solidified because of the Civil Rights cases and Plessy v. Fergusen
1883 Civil Rights Cases • Between 1866 and 1875, Congress passed several civil rights acts to implement the 13th and 14th amendments. One was the Civil Rights Act of 1875, which imposed various criminal penalties against private businesses that practiced racial discrimination. Penalties were imposed on any owner of a public establishment or conveyance who practiced racial discrimination in the conduct of his or her business. Many Northerners and Southerners opposed to Reconstruction saw the law as an infringement of personal freedom of choice.
Civil Rights Cont’d • A number of cases involving application of the federal law were collected in this case and presented to the Supreme Court during the term 1882-1883. African-American citizens protested their exclusion from a hotel dining room in Topeka, Kansas; from the opera in New York City; from the better seats of a San Franciscotheater; and from a car set aside for ladies on a train.
Constitutional Issues • The case examined the constitutionality of the Civil Rights Act of 1875 in light of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. Did the Act of 1875 violate the Constitution? Was the conduct of business by a private person subject to the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment? Did the amendment prohibit State governments from discriminating, but permit private persons to discriminate under “freedom of choice” (that is, “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone”)? What protections did the 13th and 14th amendments provide for citizens?
Polemic: Pro/Con • Pro-(for private segregation): 14th Amendment was to prevent discrimination in any form by the State governments.This is clearly and precisely not a limit on private action. It speaks to State action only. • Con-(against private segregation): The 13th and 14th amendments were clearly intended to “remove the last vestiges of slavery” from America. To permit private discrimination would be to “permit the badges and incidents of slavery” to linger in the South. The Federal Government had the authority to protect citizens from private and State actions that deprived them of their rights.
Courts Decision • Civil Rights Act of 1875 was unconstitutional—not meant to interfere with the private citizen or private property; • “The 13th Amendment has respect, not to distinctions of race…but to slavery.…” The 14th Amendment, applied to State, not private, actions … Court limited the impact of the Equal Protection Clause … • Tacitly approved segregation …
Plessy v. Fergusen • Court sanctioned segregation; • Private property would be above Public Law and scrutiny; • “As long as the accommodations were equal, it was a fair practice …” • Privatization trumped Public responsibility
Opposed Plessy v. Fergusen • Irony, the Railroads opposed Separate but equal on economic grounds—they would have to offer twice as many coaches, dining cars and sleepers to accommodate everyone legally; higher fares to off-set costs … • Judge Harlan the only dissenting opinion, a former slave owner, stated that this decision will be as pernicious to America as the Dred Scott decision had been … • It will defeat and obscure the true purposes of the Constitution … create racial hostility and distrust, solve nothing, and have to be addressed at a later date …
Great Southern Exodus • Jim Crowe and racism would remain part of the American mosaic waxing and waning with economic and social issues for some time … • Because of this tension and uncertainty … Blacks began a mass “Exodus” from the South … • Richard Greener, first African-American to graduate from Harvard.
Community Dissension • Frederick Douglass opposed migration—suggesting that the Black citizens should stay put and force the government to protect them under the 14th amendment etc … • To run away was no remedy … it will create other issues such as overcrowding and economic disadvantage and over crowding in the North …
Fundamental Questions • 1) Why did so many African Americans migrate during the late 19th and early 20th centuries? • 2) Who were some of the most significant African American leaders of this period? How did their visions for American society differ? • 3) What were some of the issues for the time?
Questions • 1) to escape lynchings, harsh racial and social injustices and also bad economic times; • 1a) Demographics: mostly young single Black males; no ties or responsibilities; more difficult for women—family to care for … • 1b) Much of the early “Exodus” was spontaneous—just hop a train, hitchhike, or walk out of the South …early around 250,000 (1890-1910) made the trek … 1910-1920 over 1 million left the South … again mostly Males …
Questions Cont’d • 2) The Most prominent on the national level: • Booker T. Washington, WEB Du Bois, Marcus Garvey, Richard T. Greener, Ralph Ellison, Ida B. Welles, and of course Frederick Douglass. • Greener was an intellectual and adherent of DuBois; taught at University of South Carolina • Ralph Ellison, author: The Invisible Man examined the plight of African Americans and trying to understand their unique identity …
Booker Taliaferro Washington • Born a slave 1856, in Virginia; His father was white, his mother Black; • President of Tuskegee Institute, statesman, and Intellectual … Proponent of Accommodation … • Washington suggested that Liberal Arts was fine … however, it was skill and trade that the African Americans needed to assimilate into an industrial society …
Booker T. Washington • His message was simple, self-help, sobriety, religion and education … • By being productive rather than argumentative, being resourceful rather than contentious … • He believed the rigors of racial segregation could eventually be overcome …This was voiced in the Atlanta Compromise of 1896 …
W.E. B. DuBois • Born Feb 23 1868; • African, French and Dutch descent; • Never a Slave or involved with slavery; Northern born; • Educated at Fisk University in Nashville and Howard University, Washington DC
W.E. B. DuBois • First African American to receive PhD from Harvard University (1895); he also attended University of Berlin. • Called for an intellectual revolt in the Black Community; • Rather than pulling oneself up from the bottom as Washington suggested, Du Bois suggested developing the talented10th –a cultural Black vanguard … to blaze a trail of protest …
Washington v. Dubois • Both succeeded and both failed; • Washington’s accommodation policy certainly helped expand the Black Middle Class; (the national Negro Business League)White Middle Class Victorians felt safer with Washington than they did with Dubois. • Dubois helped expand the intellectual talent of the Black community—but alienated both white and black middle class people—too in your face attitude (NAACP and the American Negro Academy)
The Policeman of the World • After America's first successful international conflict—the Spanish American War—we became a World player. • Why did we believe we had a right and duty to police the world? • Were we in fact, isolationists, expansionists, or both? • What were the economic and political consequences of religious missionary work?
Imperialism • 3 general propositions for war and foreign policy (get to foreign later). • 1) War is an extension of a nation’s diplomacy by other than peaceful means. • 2) If and when a nation enters a war, that war itself changes the relationship of its citizens with each other and with the national government. • 3) The rhetoric that justifies or opposes a war reveals a great deal about the way a nation’s citizens think about themselves.
Isolationists v. Expansionists • Historians have opposing views: 1) before 1898, America was isolationists; 2) after civil war, we became expansionists; 3) we were isolationists in theory, but expansionists in realty. • To determine the veracity or the casuistry of these view points, we must compare major trends of the time—which view point is the most accurate? • 1) Industrial expansion; 2) western settlement; 3) Growth of government. Isolationists say these three trends kept us isolationists, others suggest they made us expansionists.
Industrial Expansion • 1865 to 1890—largest industrial output of any nation; • Created alternating cycles of prosperity and recession; expand consumer markets; • Need foreign investment capital—1890, $3 billion foreign investment. • Shift in trade balance—Standard Oil in 1880 minimum petroleum exports—by 1890 controlled 70% of the world’s petroleum market.
Western Settlement • 2) view point; Farmers tilled more western lands and cornered the European grain market—also “Pork Diplomacy” politics. • Europe over-saturated with American agriculture products • Forced to look elsewhere—Pacific Rim, Indonesia and Asia (China).
Growth of Federal Government • 3) As Government grew more powerful, it made policies on economic matters—established tariffs and currency reform; • Industrialists and farmers looked to gov’t to help secure new markets and protect them from foreign encroachment; • Government began to play a role not only in protecting the economy but also fostering economic growth.
Missionary Factor • Missionaries of Peace: • 1) Soul saving and profit making go hand in hand: as missionaries went out to save souls they noticed that these places were also potential economic markets. • 2) Government protection and international agreements: Understood that the Gov’t would protect its citizens abroad regardless of mission. • 3) Christianity (not capitalism) is destined to conquer the world.
American Imperial Influence • Robert E. Spear—Head of the Foreign Missions Board, Presbyterian Church stated: • “The civilized nations are beginning to perceive that they have a duty, which is often contemptuously spoken of, to police the world. The recognition of this duty has been forced by trade.”
Missionaries of war • 1880s-navy in shambles; • Renewal: 3 factors: • 1) Surplus money from the recovery of the 1873 depression; • 2) William Hunt—effective Secretary of Navy; • 3) embarrassed at our navy—to be world competitors must build up our naval power and strength.
Alfred Thayer Mahan • Mahan—Naval strategist; influenced “Teddy” Roosevelt: • 1) Surplus production requires commercial colonies; • Oceans are highways, not barriers; • Powerful navy essential for commerce.
Mahan • He believed that a strong Navy would act as a deterrent to modern war: • “War now not only occurs more rarely, but is an occasional excess, from which recovery is easy.” • Fight more contained wars—sort of the precursor to ‘Détente’ and ‘Nuclear deterrence’ • “Peace through fire superiority”
Domestic and Foreign Imperialism • Turner promoted American brand of democracy—overseas was the next great frontier; • “Anglo-Saxon myth-Eugenics”– dominant intellectual justification for American imperialism—Anglo-Saxons were the end results of cultural evolution; • Anglo-Saxon duty to expand this cultural superiority to the rest of the world—”The White Man’s Burden”
American Destiny and American Duty • Ind. Sen. Albert J. Beveridge: • “Will you remember today, that we but do what our fathers did … We pitch the tents of liberty further westward and southward … [It] is not an American question but a world question (even without others consent—ones incapable of self-that government) … Do we owe no duty to the world? … we cannot fly from our world duties … we cannot retreat from any soil where providence has unfurled our banner … God’s promises of liberty and civilization rests with the United States of America …”
Spanish-American war • Along with the 3 general propositions of war, there are also 3 major points on foreign policy: • 1) A consistent foreign policy is relatively impossible in a democracy; • 2) Americans tend to use moralistic rhetoric to justify war; • 3) United States foreign policy is usually a reflection of domestic policy.
“Splendid Little War” • In response to the Battle Ship Maine—destroyed in Havana Harbor; • Began as an intervention on behalf of the oppressed Cuban People; • Public whipped to a frenzy because of William Randolph Hearst’s brand of “Yellow Journalism” • Lasted four months—more died from disease than from actual battle—heroes were “Teddy” Roosevelt’s ‘Rough Riders’ and Admiral George Dewey.
Spanish War Results--Legacy • 1) American became more like European countries; (acquired a great deal of colonial possessions—Cuba, Guam, Philippines etc) • 2) The Nation was no longer a republic equal in all its parts; • 3) the quickness of victory had lasting psychological effects on many people (not unlike the 1st Gulf war—quick, dominant, and invincible).
William McKinley • To possess colonies, U.S. needed a moral argument. • Realized we had 4 choices: • 1) Return the Islands to Spain; • 2) Sell them to a European power; • 3) Leave them to govern themselves; • 4) Keep them under American Control.
William McKinley • McKinley rejected the first three on moral grounds; to invoke them would create more upheaval and bloodshed. • He justified the fourth option based on economic and strategic value—McKinley agonized over this—he was very pious—thought colonization was wrong. • “… Nothing left to do but take them … educate them … civilize them … and Christianize them … and as God’s grace, protect them …”