Supreme Court Decision Trail of Tears
In the early 1830s the United States Supreme Court had two important decision to make, and along with the actions of President Jackson, the fate of the Cherokee Nation was decided. Cherokee nation v. Georgia was a case where Georgia passed a law about taking the Native American’s lands; Worcester v. Georgia was a case where the Supreme Court decided that the state of Georgia cannot require a license for people to live on Cherokee lands. Andrew Jackson decided to ignore the Supreme Court decision in Worcester v. Georgia which led to the trail of tears.
The Supreme Court did not make the correct ruling because they decided that they did not want to be involved in the issue between Georgia and the Cherokee Nation. The reason I believed the Supreme Court did not make the correct ruling is that the Supreme Court later changed their minds. The Supreme court decided to let the Cherokee Nation and the State of Georgia resolve the land dispute amongst themselves; this is important because it indicates an objective and fair position of the United States Supreme Court, although the supreme court probably favored the Native Americans. In Worcester v Georgia the supreme court decide that the State of Georgia could not make laws regarding the Cherokee Nation which is different than what they decided in the Cherokee Nation v Georgia cases. The Supreme Court ruled that only the United Sates government can negotiate with the Cherokee Nation. The supreme court made the right decision in Worcester v Georgia because the supreme court recognized the Native American were an oppressed people.
Because of the Supreme Court’s stance, president Andrew Jackson decided to ignore the ruling, and instead he decided to go with the assumption that the public would accept his decision based on his reputation as a war hero. In Marbury v Madison the supreme court established the idea of judicial review which means the Supreme Court decides if a law is legal or illegal. Jackson’s decision is more importantly unethical; how can a president expect citizens to abide the law of the United States when he himself does not? What Andrew Jackson did by ignoring the ruling is he violated the system of checks and balances.
There is not guarantee that if president Jackson had enforced the decision that the trail of tears would not have happened. The revised historical outcome involving Andrew Jackson enforcing the law would have resulted in both Samuel Austin Worcester not being imprisoned and the Native Americans not having to move from their land. Also, Austin Worcester would not have to get a license to live in the Indian’s land in this alternate reality. If Christian Missionaries were living with the Cherokee Nation, the State of Georgia may have been less likely to violate the rights of the Missionaries. However, Andrew Jackson’s disagreement with the supreme court ultimately led to the Georgia government removing the Native Americans from their land. This led to the trail of tears.
In my opinion the supreme court should have decided against the state of Georgia in the Cherokee nation v Georgia case, it was ultimately the decision the court made in Worcester v Georgia. The decision would have made the Georgia law to remove the Cherokee nation unconstitutional. However, Andrew Jackson would most likely still have not enforced that decision to allow the State of Georgia to remove the Cherokee Nation. Because Andrew Jackson was president, the trail of tears would most likely still have happened. For the trail of tears to be avoided either Andrew Jackson had to enforce the supreme court ruling or someone else needed to be president. Another possibility is that the public could have seen how dangerous it was for a president to ignore the supreme court and they have protested to try enforcing Andrew Jackson to obey the supreme court decision.
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