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Throughout history the way politics has worked and influenced America has gone through much change and has been molded over the many years into what it is now. Politics play such an important role in our lives and has the potential to have a major impact on it as well. As stated “Since the United States was established as a nation, Americans have been reluctant to grant government too much power, and they have often been suspicious of politicians. But over the course of the nation’s history, Americans have also turned to the government for assistance in times of need and have strongly supported the government in periods of war.” (“We the People”, Chapter 1, pg. 5). In our history we have seen how during the time of war that is when people begin to turn towards the government for assistance and for guidance. One prime example is during World War II when the Nazi’s were persecuting people of the Jewish belief and killed off millions of them, this was known as The Holocaust. I attended the Holocaust Museum as my political event and I will be explaining how The Holocaust Museum relates to the course material and how it has increased my understanding of politics through the use of lecture notes, textbook text and chapters, and The Holocaust Museum website.

To get a little background on The Holocaust I will be pulling some information from the museum website. “The Holocaust was the deliberate and calculated murder of approximately 6 million European Jews by the Nazis and their collaborators between 1933 and 1945”(Dallas Holocaust Museum Website). During this time back in America Franklin D. Roosevelt was President and was faced with the decisions that would change the outcome of World War II. One of the major influences in the war and how the it was portrayed to the American people was through media. Media during The Holocaust was a big thing especially newspaper, this is how Americans would read and keep up with the war and what was going on involving the Jewish people and the Nazis. In the textbook we learn that “Newspapers are the oldest medium for the dissemination of the news”(“We the People”, Chapter 7, pg. 251). Media coverage over the wars and political events is important for the people to be informed as to what is going on in the Political World and what the United States stance on certain subjects and matters. But even though Americans had good intel about the Nazi’s persecution of Jewish people, many didn’t believe that such a thing was even possible. Many Americans sympathized and wanted to help but this never became a national priority(The United States and The Holocaust). The effects of media were to provide information and show what side they wanted to show (“Supporting Lecture Notes”). Today most the of the media that we get comes from the internet off websites or social media that we use on the daily basis. Since 2000 the amount of media that we get has gone up and up. The power of media lies in their ability to shape which issues Americans will see which is known as agenda setting and what the opinions of Americans will have about those certain issues which is known as framing and priming(“We the People, Chapter 7, pg 270). Agenda setting is the power of the media to bring public attention to issues and problems and framings goal is to persuade a political audience of one side of an argument or another while priming is the exposure to one stimulus influences the response to another stimulus(“Supporting Lecture Notes”).

Another subject that we see happen during The Holocaust is the United States involvement in Foreign Policy. During the time of 1920 through 1930 the United States tried to remain neutral but later attacks on U.S. ships and land caused the United States to enter World War II which is also the time that The Holocaust was taking place. Authoritarian Countries were taking over other countries and it was beginning to spread, the U.S. decided that they would help provide resources but would not enter the war. After the U.S. entered the war which is during Franklin Roosevelt’s Presidency, his foreign policy was to move the United States from it’s state of isolation to intervening so that the Authoritarian countries wouldn’t take over. Foreign policy affects people’s lives especially during war, there are many people who know someone who has been wounded or killed while serving their country over seas(“We the People”, Chapter 18, page 711). During the holocaust the United States did not make it it’s priority to help refugee’s out but to win with military dominance and if they happened to help refugees while doing so then good but foreign policy did eventually help liberate the internment camps. The goals of foreign policy is to for one provide security to the American citizens, this is why we have the United Nations which is foreign policy that was founded in 1945 after World War II and 51 countries decided that they would all agree to maintain peace and security which created better bonds between the countries and allowed for social progress. Also “following World War II, the United States developed a new security policy known as containment to check or ‘contain’ the growing power of the Soviet Union…” but before that the United States had adopted the policy known as Isolationism (“We the People”, Chapter 18, page 714).  

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