The Federal Government 's Influence On American Freedoms

1612 WordsFeb 21, 20177 Pages
Between the years of 1865 and 1914, the federal government has played a major role in shaping American freedoms. These freedoms differed from various social and cultural groups. The federal government sought to expand the American economy and promote the American ideal of equality and freedom. This idea masked the hidden inequalities that were soon to be exposed and showed how much of a role the government had in displacing many minority groups into an inevitable cycle of inequality and death. Through wars and treaties and political and economic inequality set out by the federal government, groups like Native Americans and African Americans were subjected through stages of economic depression. The government did nothing but set these…show more content…
Ghost dancers near Wounded Knee Creek gained a big crowd and gathered to sing and dance their traditional dances. The federal government were worried that this would turn into something worse and sent troops to watch over them. Evidently, the troops opened fire and ended up killing around 200 people, most of them being women and children. This event, referred to as the Wounded Knee Massacre showed how far the government will go to seek land in the west for economic reasons. This marked the end of conflict between the settlers and the Native Americans. Their population had fallen to the lowest point of history. Congress slashed the treaty system that saw Native American tribes as independent nations in 1871, which was backed heavily by railroad companies to gain more land for construction (Fohner, Liberty 624). They saw Native Americans as an obstacle in production and sought to eliminate their existence. The Dawes Act in 1877 broke up the land of almost of Native American tribes and split them into small parcels with some being allotted to Native American families, while the remainder of the land was sold to white settlers (Fohner, Liberty 625). The settlers and Native Americans ideas of freedom were vastly different. Native Americans idea of

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