Essay “How Democratic was Andrew Jackson?”

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Andrew Jackson was a democratic man by supporting the people’s choices and wanting their voices to be equally heard, however that is not the case throughout his presidency. He is considered “Democratic” because he wanted everyone’s opinions to be heard and equally represented. Democracy can have different meanings, but ultimately they all correspond with each other. A democracy is a government ran by the people through the representatives that were elected. The democracy has a principle of equality between social classes and between individuals.

Jackson believed that the rich and powerful people got away with bending the acts of the government to get what they wanted, as shown in document F. He wrote a bank veto message to congress on July 10th, 1832, Jackson is worried that the more than one fourth of the stock is in foreign hands and the rest is in the hands of the richest class citizens. Jackson believes that the rich and powerful people bend the acts of the government to fulfill their selfish needs.

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Andrew Jackson wants the liberty and independence to be restores in the banks for our country. Andrew Jackson’s childhood as shown in the background essay was about how he grew up and what he was exposed to as a child. Jackson’s father died before he was born so his mother was his primary caretaker who did not have much money. He also enlisted in the Revolutionary war at the young age of 13; imagine being 13 and going to war, now of days that kind of exposure to adolescences is absurd.

Andrew Jackson was not an easy child to raise, but his attitude, hard headed personality, and persistence can be seen as a benefit in document D explaining that no matter how old Jackson was, he always had that stern attitude with him. In this document Jackson insisted that all the offices from the appointed or elected should be under the control of the peoples rule. Also he thought it would be fairly equal if the President should only serve a single term of four years, this way if one need of the people was not satisfied then hopefully the next President would succeed in that flaw.

Although Jackson’s harsh personality may have been beneficial at times, at other times it can be interpreted different. Document E shows a picture of Andrew Jackson dressed as a king standing upon the Constitution of the United States that is ripped to pieces. This is obviously a political cartoon coming from someone who did not support Jackson’s decisions. The cartoon is inferring that Jackson acted as a king and made his own rules, rather than acting like the President. Some of the decisions he brought about made it difficult for people to see him as democratic.

For example in document O it showed a chart of Andrew Jackson’s slaveholdings, the numbers visibly increased during his presidency throughout 1829-1837. This goes in the complete opposite direction of democracy. Personally it seems like Jackson was only democratic when it referred to his needs also. This is not saying that Jackson was some kind of manipulating jerk who only cared about himself, he just did things not completely for the people’s needs, and document M proves exactly that point.

Jackson did do a very noble and heartwarming thing by adopting Lyncoya, especially since Lyncoya had no one to take care of him and the other people wanted him dead. In the letter he wrote to his wife Rachel he said that it “Charity and Christianity says he ought be taken care of” this proves he honestly did care about others and ultimately did want the best thing for them. On the other hand the other letter he wrote to Rachel was telling Rachel to tell their adopted son to read his book and do what she said, showing that Lyncoya must have been acting out.

Taking Lyncoya out of his comfort zone and everything that he knew may have not been the best thing for him; Jackson was trying to convert him into the American lifestyle that Lyncoya was not used to. The Indian removal map in document L shows that the natives were not respected among the Americans. All the natives from the Seminole tribe in Florida, to the Choctaw tribe in Mississippi were forced into the Indian territory located by Arkansas and Missouri, or in other words out of the states. And in Document K shows that the natives were not included in this democracy since their opinions did not matter to the rest of the United States.

The Cherokee Nation just wanted to live on the land that they lived on for years, they didn’t want to be moved to a better place, they wanted to stay on their land because it was sentimental to them and it was their home. They didn’t rebel against the American people , but lived in peace with and fought together as alliances. The natives just wanted to stay where they grew up and that was what they spoke. Andrew Jackson did seem like he cared about the Indians in document J by trying to help the Indians out by setting up a distinct area for them to live, but

what he didn’t listen to or understand was that it was their home, not just a place where they lived. In conclusion, you could say that Andrew Jackson was democratic by the way he wanted to help the lower class be heard and brought equal to the wealthier class. But then again his encounters with the Native Americans and the facts with his slaveholdings make him seem undemocratic. However, I really do believe that Andrew Jackson tried to do the best thing for the people, but I do not believe that he elaborated much on some of the complicated situations he dealt with throughout his time as President.

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