Monday, January 27, 2014

The Unlivable Life

Walsh, Robert. "Aboard a Slave Ship." Notices of Brazil in 1828 and 1829 (1831). EyeWitness to History. (Date accessed 1/27/2014)

Robert Walsh is an Irish writer, clergyman, historian, writer, and physician. He attended Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland; once he graduated he was ordained a clergyman of the Church of Ireland. Walsh had become a Reverend and he went on to becoming chaplain to the British Embassy in St. Petersburg and then in Constantinople in 1820. He was appointed chaplain to the British Embassy in Rio de Janeiro in 1828. Walsh was a respected Reverend among his peers, and was given many responsibility. He went on to serve and work in many different areas of the world. But during his time in Brazil, Walsh spent 200 days travelling through the country investigating the conditions of slaves. Rev. Walsh had a goal in mind to abolish slavery; he tried everything in his power to prevent the transportation of slavery. When Walsh was returning back to Ireland the captain of Walsh's ship spotted a slave ship. For thirty hours or so they chased down the slave ship, and were finally able to force it to heave. Once Walsh boarded the ship he was able to encounter the cruelties of slavery first hand. Walsh vividly captures what he had seen in his book Notices of Brazil in 1828 and 1829. The book was published only a year after the event occurred, so it can be assumed that Walsh remembered many of the detail of the event. This particular passage goes in-depth on the events in which he encountered. Walsh wanted to share this horrid image that was in front of his, in order to persuade others to take action against slavery. The way Walsh convey's his message and his experience is by using many descriptive words that make that feel as though he/she is there. It constantly points out the unimaginable things that he saw and even more things that he heard people discuss. He begins by describing what he sees, and then states that his friends have seen even worse conditions. He goes on to describe those conditions, which create an even more horrid image in the readers mind. Walsh writes this because he wants people to see how terrible things really are for slaves, he knows that telling people isn't enough; he uses his writing to draw a picture and try to let his readers imagine the unimaginable.      

King Andrew the First

This cartoonist illustrates the controversy of President Andrew Jackson's "abuse" of the veto. A veto is a right given to the president, that the first 6 presidents only used a total of 10 times and Jackson by himself used 12 times. Seven of those 12 were pocket vetoes, meaning instead of addressing the bill Jackson just let the bill die on his desk with out writing a statement on it. Jackson used some of these vetoes not because he didn't believe in the bills, but for political gains. The veto was meant to be used only when a President truly believed the bill will not benefit our country. But Jackson used it for more than just that, and for his pocket vetoes he didn't bring any reasons forward for the bills dismissal. The cartoon shows Jackson as the king because the cartoonist must have felt that the President wielded all the power. Though the President could not pass any bill he wanted to, he could stop any bill from being passed. In a democratic country the cartoonist must have felt like they were ruled in a similar fashion to a monarchy. I think that Jackson represented many democratic ideals and brought democracy further for the individual person, but overall he still retained all the power with the veto. He deserves the "people's president" reputation because he did bring the people more power and expanded their right to vote. But technically the people vote for their congressmen and senators, and the statesmen are the one who may not consider Jackson the "statesmen's president" because Jackson used the veto for freely and with out consideration.  

The Peoples' Choice to Choose

Democracy by definition is, "A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections". The United States in the 19th century were not quite their with the definition, but it was a time period in which the United States was working to get closer to that definition. The amount of states in the union were increasing while the number of states with tax paying requirements and property requirements had been decreasing. In 1855 the number of states with requirements was lower and the number of states in the union was more than they had ever been in the prior 65 years. 
Within that 65 year time period the method of the presidential election went from majority legislator to majority people. Meaning that most states changed their voting procedures, so that the people voted for president, not the legislator. Over time more people have been able to vote and those same people were given the right to vote on more elections. With more states in the union and less requirements and more elections, the United States were becoming more democratic than before. In the 19th century the United States was taking a step in the right direction. But there were still many people who did not get the right to vote during this 65 year time period that spanned from 1790-1855. Women and Blacks still did not have the right to vote, so the United States was far from being the definition of democracy, but none the less they were moving closer to it.   

Congress Of Vienna

The Congress of Vienna was a gathering of diplomats of many European nations. But there was really one man running the show, his name was Klemens Von Metternich. He was an Austrian diplomat and during the Congress of Vienna he served as the Foreign Minister of the Austrian Empire. Metternich was leading the congress and he was faced with many problems that needed to be solved.
Napoleon Bonaparte

Metternich and the Congress came of with four concepts that addressed some of the issues of their time. Napoleon was no longer the ruler of France, which meant the Congress had to appoint a new rulers. France's current boundaries were far to large, and so land distribution had to take place. Revolutions on the rise in different countries need to be addressed. And the most important of all, making sure that the situation never happens again, they didn't want another man like Napoleon coming into power and take over almost all of Europe.

The Congress came up with four ideas to address each and every concern. They appointed Louis XVIII as the king of France; creating a constitutional monarchy, and claiming Principle of Legitimacy. They placed all the old rulers of countries back in power, claiming that they ruled with Divine Right. The congress distributed the land between the five powers. Prussia gained more land to make it a major power. Russia, England and Austria gain significant amounts of land. France got downsized back to the size they were before. Germany was separated into many different kingdoms and were ruled by Austria and Prussia. This maintained a balance of power between the 5 powers. To address the springing revolutions the Congress created the Principle of Intervention which gave the 5 powers the right to send in troops into a country to stop revolutions and restore monarchs, England did not participate. Lastly, the Congress created the Holy Alliance so no, one country can become to powerful; England did not participate.

Klemens Von Metternich

Through the Congress of Vienna, Metternich gained substantial land for Austria, the right to rule over some of the German kingdoms, an Alliance with the great powers of Europe, and he took Napoleon out of power. For Austria the Congress of Vienna was very beneficial, Metternich was a very intelligent and sneaky person. He dishonored a treaty between Austria and France in order to take Napoleon out of power. There was a king of Austria but Metternich was the one in command.

Overall the Congress of Vienna served to be a strong peace treaty. There wasn't a war between the 5 major powers of Europe until 1853. Napoleon was the enemy in the eyes of Europe, so France was not disdained. Some revolution were able to be suppressed, Louis XVIII sent an army to prevent an uprising in Spain. But other revolutions weren't able to be suppressed, the Revolutions of 1848; Metternich lost his power and fled Austria. The resolutions that were brought about during the Congress of Vienna ultimately brought balance and peace to Europe for a period of time.