Homework Five Answers - Student Ten

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2 During the time period covered by this lecture, a political party became very strong and then disappeared. Identify it, and explain why it disappeared.

     The political party that became very strong and than disappeared was the Whig party. It disappeared primarily due to the hotly debated issue of slavery. 

3.Lincoln v. Douglas: Why do you think Douglas beat Lincoln in 1858 (say which election), but then Lincoln won the rematch in 1860 (identify the election)?

       I think that Douglas beat Lincoln in the 1858 Senate race because Douglas was a better public speaker, and had somewhat more of an experienced background than Lincoln. Lincoln won the rematch in the 1860 Presidential election because Douglas lost the support of the South due to his “Freeport Doctrine.” This doctrine upset Southerners because it meant that slaves could be freed from slave owners if a majority ruled it. Thus without the much needed support of the South, it was impossible for Douglas to win.

4.Why were there so many one-term presidents in the 1840s and 1850s? Explain.

       There were so many one-term Presidents in the1840's and 1850's because of the issue of slavery. It was virtually impossible for a President to be neutral on the slave issue. Once up for re-election, he would not be able to get enough support from either the North or the South due to the way he addressed the slave issue during his administration. Since most challengers were “Dark Horses,” they were able to win the majority vote of the country.

5.Lincoln thought Harriet Beecher Stowe caused the Civil War. What do you think?

       The Civil War, in my opinion, was something that would have eventually happened at one point or another in our history. However, the influence of people and events certainly did shape when and why things happened the way they did. Harriet Beecher Stowe did influence and help to stir up public opinion  prior to the Civil War. Her novel sparked flames of anger and flames of justice in the hearts of many. I think she was to blame for starting the Civil War, but if she did not start it, than someone else would have. For  from the founding of our country, the war over slavery was truly an inevitable one.

7."Remember the Alamo!" Why?

       We should remember the Alamo in the same way we should remember the Revolutionary War. During this war over Texas, Mexicans massacred hundreds of the Texans protecting their rights and liberties. The people who died gave the surviving Texans hope for the future. In some small way this War was similar to our Revolutionary War because innocent people gave up their lives for something greater, true freedom.

8.The biggest question in all of American History is this: Do you think it was possible to avoid the Civil War? If so, how?

          No, I do not think it was possible to avoid the Civil War. The war over slavery was a war that was impossible to avoid because it was an issue that so many people felt so strongly about. There were very few, if any people who did not pick a side on the slavery debate. Either people hated it or loved it, there was no in between. Another reason was because slaves were brought here from the earliest days of the founding of our country. Since slavery was not outlawed from the beginning, it just snowballed into a much bigger issue than first imagined.

Honors Questions

H1.Discuss any of the issues or mysteries relating to this lecture (1840-1860). Is it ever justified for a President to lie to Congress to accomplish a goal sought by Americans?

       No, I do not think it is ever right for a President to lie to Congress. This in a way  falls under the checks and balances system of government which was put into place. By lying to Congress, the President can attempt to do whatever he wants if the legislature approves of his proposals. The President should not have the authority to declare war, that is the job of Congress. By doing this,it gives the President fake and unjust power.

H3.The South thought it could win the Civil War. Why did it think that? Do you agree it was possible for the South to win?

        The South thought that it could win the Civil War, because;
             1.It had a stable economy of cotton, tobacco and sugar cane.
             2.They thought the North lacked the will to fight, and that if they did start a war Britain and
                France would side with the South due to their dependance on its exports.
             3.They had strategic benefits, the mouth of the Mississippi was controlled by the South so they
                only needed to defend rather than conquer. 
         I do agree that the South could have won the War from a logical perspective. The South had what seemed like all the advantages, but I think that Divine Providence was the ultimate reason for conquering the evil of slavery.

H5.Compare or contrast the Dred Scott decision with Roe v. Wade.

        The similarities between the Dred Scott decision and the Roe V. Wade decision are that in both cases, human beings were declared as inhuman. In Dred Scott, it stated that Blacks were basically not people, and therefore had no rights and no protection under the Constitution.  The Roe V. Wade case established the same principle that unborn babies in their mother's wombs are not people and thus have no rights and no protection under the Constitution. These two court cases were probably the most influential and most hotly debated cases in American History.

Alexa W