Andrew Jackson

Hero or Villain?

Jackson's path to the Presidency:

Andrew Jackson had a law degree and was a member of the convention that established the Tennessee Constitution. He was elected as Tennessee's first representative in the House of Representatives. He was then elected to the Senate and finally a judge of the Tennessee Supreme Court.

He was a successful military leader and popular with his troops. He was dubbed a National Hero in the battle with the British. His popularity had him re-elected to the US Senate and then nominated for the US Presidency. Initially he lost but won by a landslide three years later. In this process he became known for the founding of the Democratic Party.

Jackson's Heroic Legacies:

Jackson's legacies were many. He was the first and only President to pay off the entire National Debt. He believed in monitoring government activities and officers to prevent corruption. He vetoed bills that were unconstitutional but also bills that did not benefit the country. He ended forever the idea of a national bank that could loan out federal money to the people it favored and thereby gain political influence. He added the Spanish territory of Florida to the US and paved the way for the annexation of Texas.

Jackson's Villainous Legacies:

Andrew Jackson was known as brave and steadfast but also dangerous and violent. He introduced the "Force Bill" to allow him to send in troops to enforce laws and tariffs. The bill was delayed long enough for a compromise tariff. He created policies, such as, the Indian Removal Act, which forced Native Americans to move West to open farm land for white settlers.

The ends do/do not justify the means:

Jackson was a hero and a villain, but I believe he did more good than bad. He may have enforced the Indian Removal Act, however, he was doing it to help the settlers/American people. He didn't think he was doing it to hurt the Native Americans but to help "his" people. He actually adopted two Native American boys.

Overall Jackson was a good man. He believed in liberty of the people for the people.

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Luke Gau