Compare and Contrast Essay
There are many differences and similarities between the way that the federal government has treated Indians and blacks. Some could say that Blacks and Indians have dealt with two very similar pasts. It seems that Indians have dealt westward expansion and blacks have dealt more with blatant racism. But no matter how you look at both of races were being harassed by white English men everyday of their lives. Being persecuted for no reason at all. The military played a big part in both of the blacks and Indians fate, for good or for worse America had always used force to conquer what they did not understand.
During the later part of the 19th century Indians were considered savages. American soldiers basically wanted to put genocide on the entire race. Americans saw the Indians as worthless and not advancing in the world. In the beginning Indians inhabited the eastern side of the country that is now USA and when American landed on Plymouth rock they wanted nothing to do with them, they colonized their villages and tried to Americanize them.
In 1803 the Americans purchased a huge chunk of land from Napoleon and all of the Indians had to move from the land purchased. In 1851 the Indians signed the Fort Laramie treaty which assigned tribes to it’s own defined territory which was trying to Americanize the Indians. Another example of that was in 1968 when the Indians signed a treaty and gave them another reservation to live on which the Indians were not too happy about. Then the last example is in 1887 when congress passed the Dawes Act which eliminated tribal ownership of land and a gave 160 acres to every person who was an Indian to live on. But in 1924 congress passed the Snyder Act, which granted Indians to become officially citizenships.
In the 19th century after the civil war the black population had nowhere to live and nowhere to work. Even though slavery was over they had nothing to their name so it was like they didn’t even have identities. The first act to get blacks the right to vote was in 1863 by president Abraham Lincoln. But before he could act upon his idea he was killed. When the 14th amendment was ratified it meant that there was citizenship for all blacks and voting rights for all blacks which the only state not to reject it was Tennessee. By 1968 all but three states ratified the 14th amendment, which was a part of the Military Reconstruction Act in 1867. After the end of reconstruction there was the 15th amendment. Which made no limits based on race, color or previous condition of servicetude. So in other words every black had the right to vote no matter what in any state. But all southern states made it difficult for blacks to vote, which included a poll tax, literary test and having 8 different boxes at the polls to confuse the blacks. The government tried to help the blacks be able to vote but it never really helped them because the hatred for blacks was too strong in the south.
Blacks and Indians have lived the same live as one another in a way. The entire time during their oppression they were trying to be tricked. Examples of that are when the Indians tried to sign peace treaties but Americans put things in that they knew Indians wouldn’t understand that the treaties were only hurting them. The blacks were being tricked with the 8 box law where at the voting polls the government set up eight different boxes so it would be more confusing for blacks and they would vote for the wrong person by accident. Another reason they are alike is the common hatred towards them and the way that the government always seems to do what’s worst for them. Some examples of that are when the Americans tried to control the Indians. They tried doing this by keeping them from having any type of power in the world. The Americans always tried to do what was better for them, not what was fair.
The difference between the government’s attitude and actions towards the blacks and Indians was that the government seemed more forgiving of the blacks. They knew that slavery was wrong so they wanted to make it right by giving them the right to vote. When the Americans were confronted about giving rights to the Indians they would have died before giving them any rights. Also the blacks were starting to be able to integrate schools and go to the same ones as white kids. The Indians were never able to even live in the same village as a white person. The biggest difference between the blacks and Indians were that Indians were restricted to living and staying on reservations. In the later part of the 19th century white were tying hard to live among the blacks, they would never live among the Indians.
Indians and blacks have both gone through huge tragedies during their early encounters with white Americans. It happened just because of the fact of the American government not being accepting of others and being afraid of them. They are also different due to the fact of Americans not being as accepting to Indians as they were to blacks. If the federal government of America just decided to either live with the blacks and Indians or just purchase more land so everybody could have their own equal land then everything could have been without tragedies. Greed is what kills us all.
Compare and Contrast Essay