Andrew Jackson, Hero or Villain?
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Andrew Jackson, our seventh President of the United States, is a rather acceptable President. He was considered as the “People’s President,” he was very straight forward and honest to his people. He takes his job seriously and is probably the most liberal president in history. His presidency however was neither a hero nor a villain, but shared a fair amount of each.
First off, the good qualities he had was the fact he had bold commitment to enforce laws and fight back against secession threats from the South. Two high tariffs were passed during 1828 and 1833 which increased taxes on imported foreign goods. The South was outraged by the high taxation, so they created the Nullification Act that allows states to nullify the laws that they do not like. Soon after the second tariff was issued, they formed a convention to build up an army with the idea of secession. Jackson was so enraged that he was willing to use all the power he had to stop it. Fortunately he was able to make a deal with the Vice President John Calhoun, who was in favor of the South, to lower the tax prices. The South backed off from secession and things settled down between the North and South.
Secondly, the bad if not malicious duties Jackson did during his presidency was the forced removal of Native Americans from Georgia to the west. The state of Georgia was against the Supreme Court who was not in favor of the removal of the Natives. Even though the Supreme Court won, Georgia as well as Jackson ignored it and forced the Natives out of Georgia to the present state of Oklahoma. Many died before they even got there. It was known as the “Trail of Tears.”
The ending of the National Bank system was the other bad deed of Jackson. He believed that it was a monopoly towards the upper class people and as a result refused to re-charter it. Jackson used one of his vetoes, and the Bank’s congressional supporters did not have enough votes to override him. The Bank ceased to exist when its charter expired in 1836, but even before that Jackson had weakened it considerably by withdrawing millions of dollars of federal funds. This later resulted in contributing to the panic in 1837.
Jackson was not a hero or a villain during his presidency. He did remove the Indians from their homeland against their will and against the Supreme Court and he did get rid of the national bank causing panic. But he enforced the laws of the United States and stopped the south from secession. Also when he became president he made it so not only men that owned land could vote, he made it so all men could vote in the presidential election. Because of these reasons I do not think Andrew Jackson was a hero or a villain.