Gilded Age DBQ

901 WordsFeb 18, 20154 Pages
“The politics of the Gilded Age failed to deal with the critical social and economic issues of the times.” Assess the validity of this statement. Use both the documents and your knowledge of the United States from 1865 to 1900. Whether or not the politics of the Gilded Age failed in dealing with social and economic issues has long been debated by historians. Peeling away streaks of gold plastered on the deficiencies of the time, the cause of such problems can be unveiled. In finding a blame for the corruption within the growing economy and its demands on a wavering society, all fingers point to the politics of the Gilded Age. Heel to heel with the end of the Civil War, the Gilded Age was a baptism of sorts; it was freedom’s debut and…show more content…
So long as the funds of millionaires were a priority in Congress- as the Senate saw to it- the minority was left in the dust of construction and expansion. (Doc 3, Doc 7) As the exploitation of the government came to light, Congress was forced to save face and demonstrate a neutrality towards businesses. The Interstate Commerce Act of 1877 quenched the thirst for change because it regulated railroads and the pools being formed. It called for carriers to decline from offering “undue…preferences” to any particular person, company, firm, etc. Favoritism would be eliminated, but so would opportunity to advance competitively as exemplified in the act of legislature of 1888. Apprentices that had been indentured had a right to properly learning the skill of their practiced trade. However, as technological advances took control of factories, laborers lost relevance to production. They no longer needed to be mindful of operating machines considering the machine itself did most of the services. A balance between employers and laborers was virtuously necessary, but concluded in a stalemate. (Doc 4, Doc 5) Despite the nation’s increase in wealth through urbanization and the façade of a prospering people, the fraudulency of the Gilded Age crippled the masses in their rise to security. The competiveness amongst laborers, a battle for control of

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