Alexander Hamilton vs Thomas Jefferson
Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson had very different political views, which is why our first president, George Washington, had them both in his cabinet. Hamilton was the first Secretary of the Treasury, while Jefferson was the first Secretary of State.
These differences begin with who they thought should govern and what type of government was the best. Hamilton thought we should have a strong central government in the interests of commerce and industry, while having the national government in charge. However, Jefferson felt that the people should rule with a decentralized, agrian government in the terms of freedom and the people should rule themselves.
They also had conflicting ideas for what economy suited us best, Hamilton believing it to be industrial and Jefferson believing the best was agricultural.
Along with those conflicts, they didn’t agree with how the constitution was to be interpreted. Hamilton was a loose constructionist, wanting to stick closer to the thought of the central government ruling.
Jefferson was a strict constructionist, believing that the constitution was to be followed closely.
Lastly, their difference in ideas helped formed political factions. They became two sides, the Federalists and the Antifederalists – or Republicans. Alexander Hamilton’s side was the Federalists, they stood for the urban mercantile interests of the seaports. Thomas Jefferson’s was the Republicans who represented the southern and rural interests. Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson had very different political views, which is why our first president, George Washington, had them both in his cabinet. Hamilton was the first Secretary of the Treasury, while Jefferson was the first Secretary of State.
These differences begin with who they thought should govern and what type of government was the best. Hamilton thought we should have a strong central government in the interests of commerce and industry, while having the national government in charge. However, Jefferson felt that the people should rule with a decentralized, agrian government in the terms of freedom and the people should rule themselves. They also had conflicting ideas for what economy suited us best, Hamilton believing it to be industrial and Jefferson believing the best was agricultural.
Along with those conflicts, they didn’t agree with how the constitution was to be interpreted. Hamilton was a loose constructionist, wanting to stick closer to the thought of the central government ruling. Jefferson was a strict constructionist, believing that the constitution was to be followed closely.
Lastly, their difference in ideas helped formed political factions. They became two sides, the Federalists and the Antifederalists – or Republicans. Alexander Hamilton’s side was the Federalists, they stood for the urban mercantile interests of the seaports. Thomas Jefferson’s was the Republicans who represented the southern and rural interests.
Thomas Jefferson vs. Alexander Hamilton
Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were two very influential people with very different ideals. With land inherited from his father, Jefferson set himself up as a Virginia tobacco farmer. Once established as a planter, Jefferson entered Virginia politics. As a politician, he did not have the ability to make rousing speeches. Instead, Jefferson spoke eloquently through his writing. His words in the Declaration of Independence and other writings are still admired today. Since Hamilton had no money or family connections to help him rise in the world, he made his way on ability, ambition, and charm.
George Washington noticed Hamilton’s talents in the early stages of the Revolutionary War. Washington made Hamilton his “aide-de-camp”, also known as a personal assistant. Near the end of the Revolution, Hamilton helped his cause by marrying Elizabeth Schuyler. She was born into one of New York’s most powerful families. With her family’s political background, after the war was over, Hamilton was elected to represent New York in Congress .
Later, he served as a delegate from New York to the Constitutional Convention . Although they had different upbringings, the two had huge influences on the upbringing of the United States.
Jefferson and Hamilton had two very different views on politics. Many clear thinking Americans could tell you at least some facts about Thomas Jefferson. Far fewer would likely have an idea of who Alexander Hamilton was and what he provided as a Founding Father. Yet his idea of an American government was just as important as that of Jefferson. Both Jefferson and Hamilton foresaw the new nation as a future power, and both had very different ways to get it there. Jefferson believed the nation’s strengths lay in its agricultural roots.
He favored an agrarian nation with most powers reserved for the states. He was very opposed to a sturdy central authority and believed that the citizens were the final authorities in government. Jefferson also encouraged support for the French Revolution. Hamilton favored a strong central authority. He believed a strong government was important to provide order so that business and industry could develop. He envisioned America becoming an industrial power. Until his death, he sought to establish a national bank and fund the national debt in order to establish a solid base for national credit . Hamilton believed that the government should be controlled by those who were educated and wealthy rather than by “the mob,” otherwise known as the lower class. He opposed involvement in the French Revolution and worried Jeffersonians by appearing, and maybe even being, too self-serving with Britain .
The two men also had a different view of the ideal economy. Like most Americans in the 1790s, Jefferson was a man of the country. He believed that the nation’s future didn’t lay with Federalist bankers and merchants, but with plain, Democratic-Republican farmers. “Those who labor in the earth,” he wrote, “are the chosen people of God, if ever He had a chosen people.” Democratic-Republicans favored an economy based on agriculture.
They contested any measures designed to positively influence the growth of business and manufacturing . Hamilton’s dream of national greatness was dependent upon the United States growing and maintaining a strong economy. In 1790, the nation’s economy was still based primarily on agriculture. Hamilton sought to expand the economy and increase the nation’s wealth by using the power of the federal government to encourage business, manufacturing, and trade. In 1790, Hamilton presented Congress with a plan to pay off all war debts as soon as possible. Hamilton claimed that if the debts were not promptly paid the government would lose respect both at home and abroad. Hamilton’s plan for repaying the debts was combatted by many Americans, especially in the South. Most southern states had already paid their war debts. They saw little or no reason to help states in the North pay off what they still owed .
Jefferson and Hamilton had varying views on foreign policy. During Jefferson’s time in office, France declared war on all of Europe while Britain declared war on France. With all of this war, the amount of trade was lowered. This caused oppression in the United States. Napoleon formed a blockade of Great Britain, and then Great Britain initiated a blockade of all of Europe. These blockades were not sufficient, but during the process 1500 American ships were abducted and all of the sailors were forced into the British navy. From this happening, Jefferson ordered the Embargo Act, which terminated the trading with foreign countries from U.S. merchants.
This act was passed in order to hold the U.S. out of war by concealing American ships away from the blockades. This act was not obeyed completely because many Americans would smuggle goods to different ports. From 1804-1809, the Embargo and Non-Intercourse Acts were passed. These acts were passed to avoid America from entering the war with France and the British. The Embargo Act didn’t allow any trade between America and any foreign countries in order to prevent American ships from being abducted in the blockades being formed. Many people disobeyed this act, so Jefferson chose to pass the Non-Intercourse Act in 1809. This act permitted American merchants to trade with ports other than British. In 1809, the act was discarded, but was later replaced by the Non-Intercourse Act, which stated that Americans could trade with foreign nations other than the European nations.
This act also failed to keep American ships out of the European ports . In the first decade of the republic, Hamilton played a decisive role in shaping domestic and foreign policy. In 1790, as Secretary of the Treasury under George Washington, he presented a far-reaching financial program to the first Congress. He proposed that the debt accumulated by the Continental Congress be paid in full, that the federal government assume all state debts, and that a Bank of the United States be commissioned. For revenue, Hamilton advocated a tariff on imported goods and a series of excise taxes. He hoped by these measures to bolster the national government at the expense of the states and to tie government to men of wealth and prosperity .
Both of these men played major roles in the formation of political parties. During the formative years of our nation’s history, the attentions of north and south, rich and poor, and industry and agriculture were tossed into the same pressure cooker of dissent until two extremely different visions for the country were brought forth. Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton believed that our new country’s federal government should be more centralized. Hamilton particularly advocated the creation of a national bank that would establish financial policy, institute credit, and homogenize a nationwide currency. Opponents dreaded that a stronger federal government would function more like a monarchy and wipe out the new idea of democracy.
However, Hamilton created the Federalist Party. Such opponents, such as Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and House Representative James Madison, believed it was more important to provide more power to seperate states. Jefferson also believed the creation of a national bank was not allowed by the Constitution. Finding the distance separating their visualizations only growing, Hamilton created the Federalist Party and Jefferson developed the Republican Party, it was later called the Democratic-Republican Party. Both parties emerged during Washington’s second term, and Washington was not happy. Washington believed that such parties would only rupture our nation and “render alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal affection.” Washington wrote these words in his farewell address, asking Americans to set aside their differences and remain unified .
The political parties that Jefferson and Hamilton developed are not quite the same as they once were. The first two political parties to emerge during Washington’s term of office were the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists . The major problem in the beginning was the ratification of the Constitution, with the Federalists standing by it and the Anti-Federalist wanting guarantees of individual freedoms and rights that were not included in the original document. The issue was sorted out with the addition of the Bill of Rights, but the parties did not depart with the issue. The Federalists were guided by Alexander Hamilton, the Secretary of the Treasury, and represented urban, business-oriented men who preferred elitism and a strong central government. The Federalists supported Hamilton’s formation of the Bank of the United States because they saw it as advancing their interests and beliefs. The Anti-Federalists came to be acknowledged as the Democratic-Republicans, led by Thomas Jefferson.
They favored stronger state governments, rural interests, and a weaker central government. They contested the bank as a foe of state control. With Hamilton’s death and John Adams’ disapproval as president, Jefferson emerged as the most admired leader at the turn of the nineteenth century. As president he progressively became more accepting of a strong central government, and the two parties’ points of view appeared to merge notably in the “Era of Good Feeling” presided over by James Monroe, one of Jefferson’s prodigies. The Democratic-Republicans arose as the only party, and their dominance continued until the mid-1800’s, though under a new name, the Democrats. The two-party system reemerged with the appearance of Andrew Jackson, who appealed to the expanding country, in which newer states found much in common with the rural, southern states but little with the developed northeast.
A new party later emerged, the Whigs. They represented many of the interests of the old Federalist Party. Jackson’s election in 1828 was achieved with a coalition between South and West, creating the new Democratic Party. Jackson’s Democrats were a simpler sort than Jefferson’s, who were mainly gentlemen farmers from the South and Middle Atlantic states. With the Jacksonian era’s worldwide manhood suffrage, practically all men could vote. This meant that rural, anti-bank, small farmers from the South and West molded the backbone of the Democratic Party. During this era the Democrats started the tradition of holding a national convention to elect a presidential candidate. Delegates elected from state and local parties could vote for the candidate, rather than the chosen party leaders who met in secret.
The Whigs were left with not only the old Federalist interests, but other groups, much like wealthy rural Southerners, who had absolutely nothing in common with other Whigs. The party was not ideologically coherent, but found success by nominating war heroes, such as William Henry Harrison and Zachary Taylor. As the Whigs were falling apart, a new Republican Party emerged from the issue of expansion of slavery into other territories. In 1860, the first Republican, Abraham Lincoln was sworn into office setting off the secession of southern states, and with them, many advocates of the Democratic Party. The Civil War ended the era of dominance of the Democrats, and marshaled in a new Republican era. Voters realigned according to regional differences and conflicting points of view regarding the expansion of slavery and state rights.
During the Reagan presidency, Democrats began to adopt some of the Republican strategies and principles, including computerized mailing lists, opinion polls, and paid consultants. The party managed to lead their candidate, Bill Clinton, to presidency in 1993, a position he held for eight years, two terms. However, government continued to be divided because the Republicans won both houses of Congress in 1994 and held them up until 2001, when the Senate resumed a Democratic majority.
By this time, George W. Bush, a Republican, had been elected President, so the tradition of a separated government, developed in 1969, continued. However, Republicans regained hold on the Senate in the 2002 elections; they swept the presidency and both houses of Congress in the elections of 2004. These recent events have led some observers to reason that a new Republican era is beginning, and that divided government as a recurring phenomenon may be coming to an end .
- Ando. N.p.. Web. 29 Sep 2013. Coleman, Aaron N. “‘A Second Bounaparty?’: A Reexamination of Alexander Hamilton during the Franco–American Crisis, 1796–1801,” Journal of the Early Republic, Volume 28, Number 2, Summer 2008, pp. 183-185 Eddins, G. Z.. N.p.. Web. 29 Sep 2013. .
- Mason, Alpheus Thomas. “The Federalist–A Split Personality,” American Historical Review 57 (1952): 625-643 . N.p.. Web. 29 Sep 2013. .
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George Washington’s Influence
George Washington was the First President of the Unitd States (1789-1797)and commander in chief of the Continental army (1775-1783) at a most critical period in American history. He was one of the most influlential revolutionary leaders of his time and earned the title “Father of His Country.” While commander in chief of the Continental army, he won many important battles that helped the Americans defeat the British, then the most powerful nation in the world. Washington made the American Revolution successful not only by his personal military triumphs but also by his skill in directing other operations.
With boh military background nad training, Washington had learned how to challenge me to give their best. He created the Continental Army out of what was little more than an armed mob, which fought and won the American Revolution. With victiory won, Washington was the most highly looked upon man in the United States.
Many people wanted Washington to use this power to establish a military dictatorship or to become king.
Washington did not pursue this idea bcause he realized dictatorship would be the downfall of the future independent nation. He was the leading influence of the union of the states under a strong central government and later the Constitution of the United States. After a new government was organized, Washington was unanimously chosen the first President and took office in 1783. Washington’s role as president was important in winning the support for the new government’s domestic and foreign policies. He is responsible for building much of the country’s political nad econmic structure. Washington fully understood the significance of his presidency. Probably no other man could have succeded in turning the states into a loasting union.
Around 1792, Washington was thinkin about retirement. Bothe Hamilton and Jefferson advised him that if he were to retire the North and South might divide. efferson said to him, “NOrth and South will hang together if they have you to hang on.” Once again, Washington was unanimously reelected in 1793. During his eight years in office, he laid down the guidelines for future presidents and set many precedents for the future presidency. He declined to serve a third term and retired in 1797 after delivering his “Farewell Address” Washington lived only two years after turning over the presidency to his successor, John Adams. Known as “Father of His Country”, Washington is universally regarded as one of the greatest figures in U.S.
British oppression: the cause of the American Revolution?
The American Revolution was costly and bloody war that granted the Americans the independence for which they fought. This 8-year-long revolutionary war from 1775 to 1783 is considered one of the greatest revolutions of all time in that the Americans had defeated the most powerful nation in the world at the time, Great Britain. The American Revolution is a critical event in the history of the United States and has been explored and evaluated by numerous historians of the 20th century. Whether or not the revolution is justifiable by the American colonists is a long, debatable subject.
Some historians assume that the American Revolution is a result of colonial selfishness and ideology whereas some argue that “only oppression … can justify war” (McLaughlin C. Andrew). All in all, it can be conclusively demonstrated that British oppression towards the colonists is largely responsible for the American Revolution. In fact, particularly after the French and Indian war, England was beginning to rule tyrannically and severely oppress the colonists especially in the economic field.
Before interpreting how Britain oppressed the colonists after the Seven Year’s War, it is important to know that even before this war Britain was already showing oppression under the practice of mercantilism. Hacker comments that “beginning in 1660 England gave new strength and direction to its empire. It began exerting stronger controls over the economic activities of the colonies” (DiBacco et al. 59) These stern policies were known as the Navigation Acts. The first Navigation Act of 1660 ordered that all colonial trade had to be in British ships or colonial ships with British captains. This act also ordered that goods such as indigo, sugar, and tobacco were to be sold only to England or another colony. Furthermore, “The law was directed against the Dutch maritime trade, which was very great at that time” (Elson Henry).
The second Navigation Act of 1663 assured that all European imports to the colonies were required to pass through Britain first. There, government collected both import and export duties on the same goods. Because this law hurt the colonies, it was later ignored. However, as Elson states: “had this law been strictly enforced, the effect on the colonies that produced the “enumerated” goods would have been disastrous.” (Elson Henry) The last Navigation Act that was ordinanced in 1673 sent British tax officials who collected duties on colonial goods destined to England. From these Navigation Acts by Britain it becomes evident that England started oppressing the colonists even before the French and Indian war. I was suggested by Elson that the Navigation Acts were “unfortunate for British interests; it served to alienate the colonists, little by little, and prepared them for the final break with the mother land.(Elson Henry).
By 1760, England began tightening the screws on the colonies especially after the French and Indian War. Economic and political crisis started to be seen. Additionally, Britain was in debt and did not want to risk another war. Therefore, to keep piece with the Indians Britain issued the Proclamation if 1763 which declared that all land west of the Appalachians was to the Indians and off-limits to the American colonists. This proclamation infuriated the colonists who wanted to seek westward, and provoked resentment which would later lead to the American Revolution (DiBacco et al. 73). This protest to the Proclamation could be considered legitimate because as Hacker states:
Stringency and bankruptcy everywhere confronted the merchants and big farmers; seamen and laborers were thrown out of work, small tradesmen were compelled to close their shops and small farmers were faced by ruin because of their expanded acreage, a diminished market and heavy fixed charges made particularly onerous as a result of currency contraction. Into the bargain, escape into the frontier zones–always the last refuge of the dispossessed–was shut off as a result of the Proclamation of 1763. (Hacker 93)
In addition to the Proclamation of 1763 England also challenged the colonists with the use of writs of assistance. Britain thought that the colonists should return to their proper role of enriching the mother country and abiding by its rules (DiBacco et al. 81). The writs of assistance were blank search warrants that allowed tax officials to seize smuggled goods at any time and place when found. James Otis who represented the colonist merchants stated that “this writ is against the fundamental principles of English law…”(DiBacco et al. 82) Otis also claimed that the writs of assistance were unconstitutional.
The Seven Year’s War caused more problems to the British which had to be solved . After the war 10,000 English soldiers remained to protect the frontier. Because the Parliament needed to raise funds for such expenses, the Stamp Act of 1765 was issued. It required that every sheet of legal document had to have a stamp on it showing that tax had been paid. Every copy of a liquor license, a land deed, a will, a newspaper, even playing cards were taxed. Moreover, those caught disobeying the law were to be tried in courts where there was no trial by jury. This act by the British was an attempt to cripple the colonists with taxes. The Stamp Act:
Meant that they had to go to a special stamp tax office to purchase the stamped paper. Not only that, the tax was to be paid in silver coin–a scarce commodity in the colonies. (DiBacco et al. 83)
Although this act was repealed in 1766, another oppressing act was passed, the Declaratory Act. The latter asserts Britain the right to rule and tax colonies. Following the Declaratory act came the Townshend Acts of 1767, where the King and Parliament expected more revenues from the colonies. The Townshend Acts placed high duties which were to be paid in gold or silver on lead, paper, glass, paint and tea. (Dibacco et al. 83). Such oppressive acts by the British Parliament meant to restrict colonial economy. In History of the United States, Salma Hale mentions that “…these restrictions, while they increased her revenues and wealth, greatly diminished the profits of the trade of the colonies, and sensibly impeded their internal prosperity.”
There were several tyrannical events and acts that took place in Boston. The city was a sight of coercion and ruthless conflict between the British and the colonists. For example, on March 5th, 1770 tensions erupted when British soldiers fired at an angry street mob killing 5 people. This incident became known as the Boston Massacre. Only a month after this incident British Parliament repealed the Townshend duties but left the Tea Act of 1775 to symbolize Britain’s control and power over the colonists. The Tea Act gave the East India Company a monopoly on trade. Moreover, the tea arrived in the company’s own ships and be sold by its own agents (DiBacco et al. 85).Colonial merchants and shippers dismayed and thought that if Parliament could establish a monopoly on tea, then they could establish monopolies on other goods. According to Louis Hacker, the East India company:
Was given permission to ship in its own vessels and dispose of, through its own merchandising agencies, a surplus stock of 17 million pounds of tea in American: and, in this way, drive out of business those Americans who carried, imported and sold in retail channels British tea. (Hacker 89)
Consequently, the Tea Act lead to the Boston Tea Party which would inflame the British parliament even more. In the Boston Tea party, a gang of radical colonists, disguised as Indians systematically dumped into the Boston harbor 342 chests of tea in response to the Tea Act.
Lastly, one of the most and domineering and oppressive acts that Britain had issued on the colonists were the Coercive Acts, or the Intolerable Acts as the colonists referred to it. After what had happened at the Boston Tea Party, Britain was enraged. Not only did England close the Boston Port until all tea wasted at the Boston Tea Party was paid back but even representative government was severely restricted in Massachusetts. The governor had the power to appoint the council, all judges and all sheriffs. Also, committees of correspondence were forbidden, and only. Under the governor’s permission were town meetings allowed to be held. Yet another act declared that soldiers were to be quartered in abandoned buildings or taverns in colonies whenever it was necessary. It was an oppressive act because it interfered with the colonists’ lives: food, clothing, and shelter had to be provided for the British Army. This act is commonly known as the Quartering Act.
To enforce these laws, Massachusetts became under military rule. Spontaneously, another act which offended the colonists known as the Quebec Act was issued in 1774. It not only guaranteed “French Canadians the right to practice Roman Catholicism” but it also “gave Quebec control over much of what is now Quebec, Ontario, and the Midwestern United States.” (The Quebec Act). The colonists were not willing to tolerate Catholicism and felt offended. The American land-hungry settlers became enraged after Quebec acquire Indian Territory which they believed to be theirs by right. Such oppressive acts by the British may have contributed to the outbreak of the American Revolution. In one historian’s interpretation of the cause of the American Revolution it was suggested that:
The direct taxing of domestic goods and services under the Stamp Act, and taxing of imports under the Townshend Acts, the tax on the tea, the Coercive Acts which followed resistance to British authority by the people of Boston, and the exclusion of colonial representatives from the Parliament that enacted such measures–these were without doubt grievances which stirred the American generation of the 1770s. (McClellan 113)
In summary, the American revolution which was a gruesome and costly war to both Britain and the Americans, it had nevertheless granted the independence the Americans battled for. Due to the fact that the American Revolution is an excessively complex topic, there are various interpretations on whether it could be justified. Undoubtedly , it becomes clear that only British oppression on the colonists could be the cause of the revolutionary war. Not only were the British oppressing the colonists before the Seven Year’s War with acts such as the Navigation Acts, but by 1760 England was starting to rule ruthlessly and oppress the colonies especially in the economic aspect. Lecky, one of the ablest historians mentions in “History of England that: “The deliberate selfishness of the English commercial legislation was digging a chasm between the mother country and the colonists.”
Americans win the War of Independence
Before the first shots were fired in the American War of Independence, very few people gave the Americans (also known as the ‘colonists’ or ‘patriots’) a chance. Britain had a population of 11 million compared to the patriots 2.5 million of whom 20% were slaves. Furthermore Britain had the most powerful navy in the world, an experienced and well-armed standing army of 48,000 men and the support of tens of thousands of loyalists and Indian tribes. Britain also held the economic advantage as they could rely on the profits from the South Atlantic system and the industrial revolution.
So at the beginning of the war, an American victory seemed distinctly unlikely for American forces weak and British military and naval power enormous by comparison.[i]
Foreign aid obtained by the colonists was extremely important in their victory. In 1776 France extended a secret loan to the colonies and supplied them with gunpowder. These loans of gunpowder were extremely important in enabling the patriots to defeat Britain in the Battle of Saratoga.
In February 1778 France and America signed The Treaty of Alliance that stated once France entered the war against Britain, there would be no more treaties before the colonists gained liberty, sovereignty and independence.[ii] The treaty also opened both nations ports to the others commerce and guaranteed French possessions in the New World. Therefore this alliance was very important as it brought optimism and boosted the morale of the patriots. As one soldier from Pennsylvania said, “There has been a great change in this state since the news from France”.
France gave money, supplies and in the last phase of the war, military force. France supplied most of the muskets, bayonets and canons used by the colonists and without French aid it is debatable if they could have won the war. For example at the Battle of Yorktown in 1781, 20 French war ships prevented Cornwallis’ escape and led to the surrender of the British force and the end of the war.
Furthermore France’s participation in the war and Vergennes’ (French foreign minister) influence was a big factor in persuading other countries to join the American war effort. In 1779 and 1780, both Spain and Holland respectively entered against Great Britain and soon after Catherine of Russia organised the League of Armed Neutrality which when threatened by Britain in the early 1780’s, responded by deterring British trade.
So foreign aid was a very important factor in America’s victory as it is probable that they did not have the power to defeat the British on their own.
The logistics of the war was a second major reason for the American’s victory. Britain encountered many logistical problems in the war which all contributed in some way to its defeat. Howe thought that driving the American army from the battlefield in any area would return that area to loyalty to the crown or at least neutrality. However this was not the case. Britain was only able to control areas that the military occupied so therefore when the army moved it had to abandon the area it previously occupied. As a result when a British force was defeated its only hope was to retreat to a fortified port and so if the navy was not there with its usual overwhelming power, the army would be in serious trouble, as exemplified with the Battle of Yorktown.
Another logistical problem was that the British army could not expect supplies from any area it did not occupy and also the areas Britain did occupy were too small to provision the British army.[iii] Therefore they had to be dependent on supplies from Britain but even this was often a major problem as the obtaining of these supplies was held up administratively. The British Treasury and Admiralty did not co-operate with each other to make provisioning efficient or effective. For example in 1776 Admiralty agents insisted that army suppliers be licensed and applications accompanied by exact cargo manifests. Therefore, as ships were loaded at Cork and applications made in London, voyages could be delayed for weeks and sometimes months and as a result hampered the British war effort.
Britain also suffered a number of transport problems that further complicated proceedings. In October and November 1775, 36 supply ships loaded with hundreds of tons of food and supplies left Britain to make sure the 11,000 soldiers, sailors and marines in Boston would have a comfortable winter. However the ships witnessed some of the worst storms of the century and many sunk, were captured or fled towards the West Indies. In the end only 13 supply ships reached Boston by which time most of the food had gone bad.[iv] So therefore transport problems are another logistical problem that contributed to Britain’s defeat.
Food that did reach America created another problem for the British, as there were no good means to store or distribute the food. Therefore the food often sat on the ships holding them up when they could have been used for battle or getting more supplies.
Logistical problems also hit the British army directly as they could only operate freely as long as the supplies they could carry lasted. Therefore they had to move as soon as they ran out of supplies, even if it was not militarily expedient. So as the army was always moving it could not force an American army to battle, which created a big advantage for the colonists as they could decide when to fight.[v]
So overall Britain had to deal with many distribution and communication problems and despite having more supplies than the enemy, because of the above problems this proved to be no advantage.
A third major reason for the patriot’s victory revolved around the military strategy of both sides. On three notable occasions Britain made terrible mistakes in battle that contributed massively to their overall defeat. At the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775, Britain went against all accepted military practice by attacking American forces on Breeds Hill, having to go up a steep and grassy hill in the open carrying sixty pound packs whilst the colonists were under cover. Of three British attacks, the colonists won two and Britain suffered a 50% loss of soldiers and didn’t make another offensive for fourteen months. On top of this, the battle seriously strengthened American morale and gave Washington over a year to build an army and prepare for the next battle. [vi]
At the Battle of Long Island in 1776 Britain made a massive strategic error of not exploiting their success. The British army had marched unexpected straight into the rear of the colonists and quickly forced a retreat. Britain had thousands of fresh troops available and had the momentum but allowed the colonists to escape from Brooklyn to Manhattan by boat. Therefore Britain lost their best chance of destroying the Continental army, capturing Washington and winning the war.[vii]
The final major military mistake by Britain was in 1777 when General Howe’s plan to attack Philadelphia instead of going to Albany to help Burgoyne backfired when the Continental Congress fled Philadelphia. Therefore Burgoyne had to send further supplies and troops to support Howe instead of using them on his way to Albany. Howe underestimated the colonist’s ability to evade the British and made a massive mistake because Burgoyne needed those troops, supplies and Howe’s help at the Battle of Saratoga.
In complete contrast, the colonists displayed some excellent tactics and strategies at vital times that proved extremely important in their victory in the war. During the collective battles known as the Battle of Saratoga in 1777, at Fort Stanwix Britain were at first in control. However the patriots sent Hon Yost Schuyler to the fort and he promoted a superstition that caused the Indians to desert the fort and as a result caused the British to retreat to Oswego and abandon their siege. Therefore the great tactics at Fort Stanwix proved vital as the British were previously in a great position in the battle.
At Bennington, the patriots played another great trick sending men disguised as loyalists to mingle with British troops. They went to the rear of the British army and when the patriots attacked they turned against the British. So again the great tactics shown by the Americans provided a massive victory and the British suffered huge casualties and loss of supplies that proved significant in the war.
A final example of the great tactics used by the patriots was at Freemans Farm, when American riflemen forced a retreat in the first British assault after shooting from the tops of trees and then in the second assault caused huge losses to Burgoynes army after being situated on a low hill.[viii] This battle carried extra significance as the victory brought an American alliance with France, which as explained before was crucial in the outcome of the war.
However, whilst discussing military strategy it is also important to acknowledge the role played by the terrain as a factor for America’s victory. Britain found it difficult to cope with the many rivers and poor roads that they encountered and there were no large open fields where the cavalry could manoeuvre. It was rare to see Britain using whole regiments and disciplined fire across open ground. The territory thus prevented Britain from moving rapidly to surround rebels and from making the most of their superior discipline in formal lines of battle. So therefore Americans benefited from their own familiar terrain. As they did not have the fire discipline or military expertise and skills to fight formal battles, it was suited to their guerrilla warfare type battle techniques.
Washington was also crucial to the shape and outcome of the war. By 1777 Washington had fought Howe five times and lost every one, however Washington never lost his army.[ix] He was a big stabilising force and from his militia experience, was excellent at managing an army and keeping it together. As a Southerner, Washington was also vital in bringing southern support into a war that originally was being fought mainly by New Englanders.
However most importantly Washington’s tactics on two notable occasions were massive factors in the outcome of the war. First in 1776 at the Battle of Long Island, whilst in serious trouble, Washington enabled an escape for the colonists from Brooklyn to Manhattan by boat. In doing this, Washington prevented Britain’s best chance of winning the war.
Secondly in Virginia in October 1781, Washington was influential in leading five thousand French and two thousand American troops across Pennsylvania into Virginia. Washington moved them so fast that Britain didn’t even know of the Yorktown attack until it was too late. This piece of military mastermind by Washington soon led to a British surrender and subsequently signalled the end of the war.
The fourth and possibly final major reason for the American’s victory revolved around the contrasting motivation and passion of the two sides. The patriots were always willing to continue fighting because they had a strong desire to win their independence and loved their homeland. On the other hand British soldiers were not fighting for a cause that directly affected them as they were in a country almost three thousand miles from home. Therefore as the war continued patriot fervour increased whereas British morale went down.
In the colonies, the desire to fight the British was never in question. Before the outbreak of war Thomas Paine’s pamphlet ‘Common Sense’ was able to sway public sentiment in favour of complete independence and against King George’s tyranny. During the revolution Paine continued to stir up enthusiasm and patriotism in America with ‘The Crisis’ with comments such as, “Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict the more glorious the triumph”.[x]
Therefore ‘The Crisis’ affected soldiers and civilians in all levels of society, increasing morale, confidence and belief. Paine marched with troops, understood them and kept them fighting under horrible circumstances. Thus, Paine played an important role in the patriot’s victory.
Propaganda also played a big role in influencing public opinion. Anti-British cartoons were popular throughout the colonies and influenced the public. The inhumane treatment of American prisoners was a main topic of propaganda and there were many newspapers detailing atrocities by the British; for example, the fact that more prisoners of war died than were killed in action. Therefore the use of propaganda was very influential and turned many loyalists against the British.
So overall in conclusion, I have identified four major reasons why the Americans won the War of Independence. Foreign aid from France was vital through their money, supplies and military force. France also helped bring Spain and Holland into the war and without them the colonists would have found it difficult to win. Secondly, Britain suffered many logistical problems including the obtaining and distributing of supplies and also communication problems. With regards to military strategy, Britain made a number of strategic errors and struggled to come to terms with the difficult terrain, whereas the colonists under the influential command of Washington made some excellent tactical decisions in battle. Finally the Americans displayed great motivation and passion to secure victory and independence and never lost their desire to fight. In contrast British soldiers were not directly affected whatever the result of war and this proved crucial.
[i] Bonwick, Colin. The American Revolution (Macmillan, 1991) 86
[ii] Henretta, James. America: A Concise History (St. Martin’s, 1999) 147
[iii] Bowler, Arthur. Logistics and the Failure of the British Army in America: 1775-1783 (Princeton, 1975) 239
[iv] Perret, Geoffrey. A Country Made by War (Vintage Books, 1990) 20
[v] Heller, Charles. America’s First Battles: 1776-1965 (Lawrence, 1986) 24
[vi] Perret, 15
[vii] Heller, 31
[viii] Perret, 42
[ix] Leckie, Robert. The Wars of America (Harper & Row, 1981) 179
[x] Perret, 34
Bailyn, Bernard. The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution. Harvard College, 1967
Bonwick, Colin. The American Revolution. Macmillan, 1991
Bowler, Arthur. Logistics and the Failure of the British Army in America: 1775-1783. Princeton, 1975
Conway, Stephen. The War of American Independence 1775-1783. Arnold, 1995
Heller, Charles. America’s First Battles 1776-1965. Lawrence, 1986
Henretta, James. America: A Concise History. St. Martin’s, 1999
Leckie, Robert. The Wars of America. Harper & Row, 1981
Perret, Geoffrey. A Country Made by War. Vintage Books, 1990
John Adams and His Roles as President
John Adams was one of the leaders in the defend American Independence. He was born on October 30, 1735. His presidency started in 1976 through 1800 and was the second president of the United States, after winning the election versus Alexander Hamilton. Upon winning the election he ended up being the Chief of State. His most significant accomplishment, as President, was to prevent a war with France, while preserving American honor. In our viewpoint he did an excellent job of this nevertheless he was not significantly supported by the Americans at the time.
John Adams was not a popular president of his time. Being the president, and Chief Executive, Adams was enabled to select his own cabinet. He replaced Washington’s cabinet which consisted of Edmund Randolph, Alexander Hamilton, Henry Knox, and William Bradford. Timothy Pickering of Massachusetts was selected the secretary of state, Oliver Welcott of Connecticut became the secretary of treasury, James McHenry of Maryland became the secretary of war, and Charles Lee of Virginia was designated the attorney general of the United States.
It’s apparent that George Washington had a much better cabinet than Adams did. John Adam’s cabinet was not nearly as sharp or as smart as the one of Washington. Obviously, Mr. Adams did not do too good of a task on choosing his associates.
Another function that John Adams withstood was the role as Chief Administrator. In today’s contemporary world the president would be in charge of agencies such as the CIA and the FBI. In Adam’s days these firms did not exist. However he was still in charge of keeping the federal government works running as smoothly as possible. As a believer in central government, he helped reinforce the Federal government.
As Chief Diplomat, John Adams faced the greatest issue in diplomacy. The French were attacking American shipping. He sent out three representatives to France to attempt to exercise distinctions in between the French and the United States government. His emissaries were met by three French agents requiring a bribe. This ended up being understood as the “XYZ” affair.
Infuriated by the absurd 250,000 bribe of the French agents Adams began to prepare for war. He first asked for a provisional army. He also asked for the officers to be commissioned and for recruiting to begin. However, he did not call for an establishment of a large, professional army. Throughout the two years that the possibility of a war had existed, Adams had made it clear to everyone that he put he put his faith in a strong navy. As commander-in-chief he decided he did not want to use the army as an instrument for defense.
Adams believed that the only way France could be brought around to treat with American envoys on an even basis is if it was made clear that the Americans were prepared to fight and that they would not submit to any further humiliation. He wanted France to see that the Americans were not backing down and that they were not afraid to go to war with the nation of France.
After the “XYZ affair” John Adams acted on his role as chief legislature. He responded with The Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798. They were designed to crush the conflict. After two years John Adams decided it would be best to reopen negotiations because war with France was not in the best interest of the United States. He signed a peace treaty with France and thereof is accredited with bringing peace between the U.S. and France.
Yet another role of the president is to be Chief of Party. We believe that John Adams was a failure in leading his political party as the end of the Federalists came about because of his presidency. During Adams’ presidency, the Federalist party split up. This happened because of how much John Adams and Alexander Hamilton disliked each other. Hamilton didn’t want Adams to be re-elected, and so he critized his performance as a President. Undoubtedly, Adams lost his re-election and Thomas Jefferson, the leader of the Democratic-Republican party, won office. After Adams retirement, and Hamilton’s unfortunate death, the Federalist Party was left without strong leader and steadily grew weaker and weaker.
John Adams was not a bad president. However, because of society’s selfish and impatient needs, he was made out to be the enemy. Americans blamed John Adams for being scared to go to war, but in reality, it’s a lot easier to go to war than it is to keep peace. It’s also quite difficult to go against the majority of ones colleagues who continually pressure you to act. John Adams may not have been the greatest president because of his ambition. However, he was a much better president and showed exemplary qualities as a chief citizen than what he was given credit for. He was a brave and honorable man who gave up re-election by not going to war. It shows real honor when you can give up your own selfish needs for the good of your country. John Adams was a much better president than he was given credit for.
Two Party System DBQ
Despite the fact the founding fathers advised contrary to the establishment of political factions as the Constitution withstood the ratification process, a rift amongst men in President George Washington’s cabinet instituted the move toward the conception of political party. During the time period between 1791 and 1833, a two-party system had begun that demonstrated the philosophy of the Federalists and Democratic-Republicans. Although these two political groups were unyielding in their original ideas and beliefs, both had to change a few of their initial standpoints on numerous topics as they dealt with the truth of the government.
America’s first president, George Washington, assembled some of the finest political thinkers of the era in his group of advisers, often referred to as the presidential cabinet. Two members of the cabinet, Alexander Hamilton, Secretary of the Treasury, and Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State, shortly found themselves competing with each other on many aspects of the Washington administration. The first disagreement developed when Hamilton sought a Bank of the United States be created to establish order to the American economy and trade, using the “elastic clause” of the Constitution to rationalize his request (Doc.
1). Thomas Jefferson disputed against the Bank since it was not approved by the Constitution, in consequence illegal and a violation of states’ rights (Doc. 2).
Following this controversy derived two meanings of the Constitution. One being Hamilton’s loose construction, where if the Constitution does not refuse something, it then becomes allowed. Secondly, Jefferson’s strict construction, where if the Constitution doesn’t clearly address a group, it cannot be present. These ideologies became the source of the first two political parties, along with the philosophy about whether the federal or state government should have the greater control. Hamilton was joined by Vice President John Quincy Adams leading the Federalists, who acknowledged a strong central government. Jefferson was joined by James Madison leading the Democrat-Republicans, who believed power was in the hands of the states.
On the other hand, as the country advanced and refined, it became known that the fixed views of the two political parties needed to be reasonable if the nation were to expand. Jefferson made the first action toward reconciliation and moderation of his political outlook with the Federalists by contributing a sense of peace in his First Inaugural Address (Doc. 3). Jefferson declared, “We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists,” signifying Americans are all in this society together and collectively make the world outstanding. Jefferson and his party had to further control their thinking when the chance to purchase the Louisiana Territory from France appeared in 1803 (Doc. 4). There was a lack of preparation in the Constitution for a president to buy more territory. However, the opportunity may have not continued to be accessible for a long amount of time, and Jefferson changed his own “strict construction” aspects and doubled the size of the United States.
In opposition to its preference, the United States became engaged in European affairs as the Napoleonic War was fought, interrupting with American shipping and trade. At last, the Untied States went to war with Great Britain to protect its right to “freedom of the seas.” Federalists, who were now out of power in the executive branch and a minority in the law-based branch, began to protest America’s involvement. They created a set of orders in Hartford, Connecticut, which would have given more power to the outnumbered party, something they were against in the 1790s (Doc. 5). So, by the final opinion of the War of 1812, both political parties had regulated their core beliefs to the point that their belief systems had practically switched roles. The Democrat-Republicans were more likely a party that supported “loose construction” and the Federalists the adverse. Succeeding the election of 1816, the Federalist Party virtually ceased to exist, giving the Democrat-Republicans a chance to cultivate the United States in its own perspective.
As the Democrat-Republicans evolved, so did the nation, as diverse divisions of people were granted suffrage rights, the rights to vote; beginning in the modern western states and then in the settled states on the Atlantic Coast. These new voters persuaded the Democrat-Republican party to ultimately give them greater thought as the ancient “aristocracy” of leadership was deteriorating. In the election of 1828, the Democrat-Republican party separated into two groups of disagreeing people, the Democrats and the National Republicans. From the Democrats became visible the first “common man” president in Andrew Jackson. Jackson insisted to be ruling from the will of “the People,” and from this way of thinking he took it upon himself to conserve the nation from the political and economic exploitations of the elapsed.
In order for Jackson to accomplish this, he vetoed many bills that he believed would cause danger to society or disregard his beliefs about right and wrong in the name of the “common man,” although Jackson may have vetoed some bills for revenge-loving reasons, rather than deciding on what is most beneficial to the United States. The Maysville Road veto was created because it was an enlargement of the National Road but only within the state of Kentucky. In addition, Jackson vetoed the National Bank recharter in 1832 (Doc. 6), primarily because of his internal distrust of banks. President Jackson’s political adversaries branded him “King Andrew” or “King Veto” because of the uncommon and bizarre power he seemed to be maintaining (Doc. 7).
The two-party system changed greatly from 1791 to 1833. The Federalist Party transformed from being an organization that held immense theories and a loose meaning of the Constitution to one that embraced a more strict interpretation and then vanished. All the same, the Federalists were reclaimed in 1828 as the National Republicans, taking on a wider idea that the central government should be more assertive than the state governments. The Democrat-Republicans began as a minority party that affirmed the Constitution was a fair and tough document to be obeyed, until they came across power and their ideology alleviated, as did their perception of the Constitution. By the period of the re-development of the two-party system, the old way of thinking of state governments having more power over its people, in nearly all instances, became common in the Democratic Party.
George Washington Plunkitt
In the late 19th century, battle lines of distaste and resentment were drawn between the new immigrant class and the current American citizens. In New York City, the Nativists and the Irish Catholic community clashed on opposing sides of the line. The majority of Irish Catholic immigrants were uneducated, unskilled, and alien to the industrial city life of the new world. Their mass numbers filled up the city’s slums, poor houses, and prisons. With strong aversion from New York Nativists, the Irish immigrant community was initially obstructed from attaining governmental support.
This void in representation of such a massive percentage of New York’s population allowed for the emergence and great success of Tammany Hall leaders like George Washington Plunkitt. George Washington Plunkitt, born in 1842, grew up surrounded by this new immigrant Irish-Catholic community. He identified with the city’s immigrant poor and working class; the resented New York Irish were Plunkitt’s community. Although Plunkitt used his political status for his own benefit, his position as a political leader was useful for his community.
Plunkitt’s nepotistic beliefs, while controversial, proved to benefit his community. He had a strong belief in the spoils system and stood for “rewarding the men that won the victory” (12). He could not foresee the existence of a party system that did not place its own workers in offices (13). He candidly discussed the impossibilities of “[keeping] an organization together without patronage” (36). In response to an accusation of Tammany Hall’s patronage, Plunkitt expressed his belief that there is no one more in need, better fit, or more anxious to serve the city than Tammany workers (51).
Although this outlook gave Plunkitt a controversial ‘quid pro quo’ attitude towards government affairs, his community benefitted from this arrangement. This arrangement allowed Plunkitt to provide jobs to his supporters who might have otherwise suffered unemployment. A majority of Plunkitt’s supporters were uneducated and unskilled migrants who were generally feared and disapproved of. Plunkitt meanwhile knew “every big employer in [his] district and in the whole city” and made a point to keep track of the jobs (27).
These connections enabled Plunkitt to provide jobs for the men he considered ‘deservin’ ” (27). To him, a deserving man is any man with a vote for Tammany Hall. Not only did Plunkitt provide jobs to his constituents but he also provided rudimentary support and a form of insurance for the poorer families in his district. If a family in his district was in need, he was able to “fix them up” until they were on their own feet again (27). He proclaimed “no Tammany man goes hungry in my district” (36).
Plunkitt made it unmistakably clear though, that while it was a philanthropy he was offering, it was only in the name of politics. For example, after describing the support he offered to families burdened by the devastation of a fire, he selfishly asked himself how many votes one fire could bring him (37). Although Plunkitt was never without a self-interest motive, he was in a unique position having the ability to be a provider for families in need. At the time, there was no government welfare system established.
Instead, the poor and those in need could rely on the welfare offered by Plunkitt; his community benefitted from his ability to take care of them. Plunkitt’s own benefits from government are obscured and, in some way, vindicated because of the support he provided for his community. Plunkitt made a fortune in politics but in return succeeded in getting big improvements for New York City (28). If Plunkitt had not made his pile in politics, the social net he controlled would have collapsed.
The community would have been worse off if he had not reaped the benefits from government and used his own funds to provide assistance to the poor. Plunkitt was in no way a philanthropist but in becoming a nepotistic and selfish government official who used politics for his own advantage, he became useful to his community. Plunkitt saw a vote in everyone, no matter his or her status. He had the ability to “be several sorts of a man in a single day” (45).
He could “talk grammar” with the wealthy but also connect with the common people of his district (45). He kept is constituents close and would “do them a good turn whenever he [had] a chance” (46). Plunkitt’s adaptable personality and mercantile approach towards politics made him valuable to his community. With his status and fortune, he supported his community and provided government representation for the new Irish immigrant class. He was a provider of jobs and a provider of welfare in return for a vote.
Important Parts In History
I am sure many have heard about historical changes such as “Jay’s Treaty”, “The Whiskey Rebellion”, and “Pinckney’s Treaty”. They are taught to children as young as Eight years old. These three were major parts in Domestic Politics in the 18th century. In 1793, the British government violated international law by ordering naval commanders to begin seizing any American ship that carried French goods or was sailing for a French port. By 1794, several Hundred American ships were confiscated. Choices were to Join the British navy or be imprisoned.
The British also armed Indians to attack settlers. On April 16, 1794, Washington named John Jay as a special envoy to Great Britain. They made an agreement; Jay wanted them to settle all major issues: to get the British out of their forts along the Great Lakes, to secure reparations for the losses of American shippers, compensation for southern slaves carried away by British ships in 1783, and a new commercial treaty that would legalize American trade with the British West Indies.
Jay accepted the British definition of neutral rights – that exports of tar, pitch and other products needed for warships were contraband and that such military products could not go in neutral ships to enemy ports – and the “rule of 1756” prevailed, meaning that trade was prohibited in peacetime because of mercantilist restrictions could not be opened in wartime. Britain also gained most-favored-nation treatment in American commerce and a promise that French privateers would not be outfitted in American ports. Finally, Jay conceded that the British need not compensate U.S. Citizens for the enslaved people who have escaped during the war and that the pre-Revolutionary American debts to the British merchants would be paid by the U.S. Government. In return, Jay won three important points: British evacuation of their six northwestern forts by 1796, reparations for the seizures of American ships and cargo in 1793 – 1794, and the right of American merchants to trade with the British West Indies. In 1791, Alexander Hamilton levied federal tax on liquor. It outraged frontier farmers because it had taxed their most profitable commodity.
Western farmers were also suspicious of the new government in Philadelphia. The frontiersmen considered the whiskey tax another part of Hamilton’s scheme to pick the pockets of the poor to enrich urban speculators. All through the backcountry, from Georgia to Pennsylvania and beyond, the whiskey tax provoked resistance and evasion. In the summer of 1794, discontent over the federal tax on whiskey exploded into open rebellion in Western Pennsylvania. They began terrorizing federal revenue officers, they blew up the stills of those who paid the tax, robed the mails, stopped court proceedings, and threatened an assault on Pittsburgh.
On August 7, 1794, President Washington issued a proclamation ordering the insurgents home and calling out 12,900 militiamen from Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. After there was no response from the “whisky boys” he ordered 13,000 soldiers to round them up and suppress the rebellion, however, the rebels vanished into the hills. The soldiers were able to round up twenty barefoot, ragged prisoners. Since Washington overreacted, the government had made it’s point and gained “reputation and strength” but it was not the end of the whisky rebellions, which continued in an unending war between moonshiners and federal tax officers.
While these stirring events were transpiring in Pennsylvania, the Spanish were encouraging the Creeks, Choctaws, Chickasaws, and Cherokees in the Old southwest to create the same turmoil that the British had formed along the Ohio River. In Tennessee white settlers reacted by burning and leveling Indian villages. The Scared Spanish entered into treaty negotiations with the Americans. Thomas Pinckney (U.S. negotiator) pulled off a diplomatic triumph in 1795 when he won acceptance of a boundary at the 31st parallel, open access to the Mississippi River, the right to transport goods to Spanish-Controlled New Orleans a commission to settle American claims against Spain, and a promise by each side to refrain from inciting Indian attacks on the other side.
Ratification of Pinckney’s Treaty came quickly. It was immensely popular, especially among westerners eager to use the Mississippi River to transport their crops to the market. “Jay’s Treaty”, “The Whisky Rebellion” and “Pinckney’s Treaty” are very important parts of the Domestic Politics during the 1700’s. About every person in America has been taught these three important parts in History.
Free Press and Democracy
Democracy is a form of government in which all eligible citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Democracy allows eligible citizens to participate equally and to have free access to information ideas and opinions, with this reasoning is inferred that de democracy needs free press in order to be function properly.
The power of the press is associated to the fundamental principles of democracy that’s to say the freedom of expression and freedom of opinion.
The desire of people to express themselves freely wouldn’t have been possible without a fully free press. The power of the press has managed to reach such importance as freedom of expression.
Free press has the capacity to arms citizens with essential information-the truth, that gives people the opportunity to choose the path to follow and to have their own opinion when it comes to solve problems or take a side in the issues that will always take place in a society.
An intimidated, uninformed and disinterested public would be the predictable result of the loss of freedom of the press. It is basic statement that to maintain a healthy democracy no government activity should escape the scrutiny of the press.
According to one story, one of Napoleon’s contemporaries visited the United States as a guest of President Thomas Jefferson. Upon seeing a Federalist newspaper article lying on a table that heavily criticized Jefferson’s policies, the visiting Frenchman remarked that the writer of the article should be punished. Jefferson responded calmly, “ Sir, you may take the newspaper back with you to France, because that is the difference between my country and yours.” The president, a great believer in freedom of the press, was telling his visitor that without this right, American would not be the country that it is. This was true in 1800, and is equally true today. The freedom to publish facts, even opposing opinions about those facts, is essential for informed voters to participate in a democracy.
In a nutshell, it can be inferred with all this information that democracy and free press needs to come handy, together in order to give people the freedom that they deserve to take their own opinion in a determinate matter. In my opinion everybody have the right to take their own decisions and to have their own opinion in all aspects of live. Without free press there is no democracy, no freedom of choice.