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Andrew Jackson: White Supremacist and Ethnic Cleanser

Written by David Starr   
Wednesday, 09 June 2021 03:03

Apologists for Andrew Jackson may argue that he didn't really force Indian tribes to relocate based on a number of treaties that were implemented. However, there wasn't much choice in the matter for Indians. The treaties were the result of the continuing goal of westward expansion based on financial trickery and the threat of violence, but disguised as a "benevolent" endeavor. Jackson claimed that he wanted to spread civilization into indian territory but without the native tribes. To make it official, the government passed the Indian Removal Act in 1830.

Jackson's argument reflected the white supremacy of his day: "it will place a dense and civilized population [whites] in large tracts of country now occupied by a few savage hunters." He also stated matter-of-factly that "[t]he tribes which occupied the countries now constituting the Eastern States were annihilated or have melted away to make room for the whites." And it could be said that Jackson was promoting a form of "benevolent" segregation when he stated that "It will separate the Indians from immediate contact with settlements of whites; free them from the power of the States."

An important example of the Indian Removal Act culminated in the Trail of Tears. From the National Archives: "[T]he Treaty of Echota, ratified in 1836, called for the removal of the Cherokees living in Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Alabama. The treaty was opposed by many members of the Cherokee Nation; and when they refused to leave, Maj. Gen. Winfield Scott was ordered to push them out." Scott ordered to have the Indians removed humanely. But "During the fall and winter of 1838-39, the Cherokees were forcibly moved from their homes to the Indian Territory–some having to walk as many as 1,000 miles over a four-month period. Approximately 4,000 of 16,000 Cherokees died along the way."

Jackson didn't seem to be bothered by Indian removal, saying, "Build a fire under them, and when it gets hot enough, they'll move."

In an article (4/20/2016) by Dylan Matthews published in Vox, no punches were pulled in describing Andrew Jackson. Matthews wrote that Jackson was "an executioner, a slaver, an ethnic cleanser, and an economic illiterate," who was "cartoonishly right-wing" on economic matters. Furthermore, "Jackson is even worse than his horrifying brutal record with regard to Native Americans indicates. Indian removal was not just a crime against humanity, it was a crime against humanity intended to abet another crime against humanity: By clearing the Cherokee from the American South, Jackson hoped to open up more land for cultivation by slave plantations. He owned hundreds of slaves, and in 1835 worked with his postmaster general to censor anti-slavery mailings from northern abolitionists."

Andrew Jackson may have worked out numerous treaties with the Indian tribes, but it was basically a failure, with the treaties being broken by state governments who sided with white settlers. Matthews concluded that Jackson deserves "nothing but contempt from modern America." your social media marketing partner
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