New Deal Impact On Society Essay

1751 words - 8 pages

People continue to argue whether the New Deal is radical or conservative today using many programs and outcomes as their support. The government imposed new radical programs influencing American society with changes in political and social reform. Conservatives at the time felt threatened by government interference feeling the changes led them toward a socialist style of government. Today, historians view the New Deal as more conservative, completely opposite of what conservatives felt at the time. With programs challenging economic, social, and political standards, the New Deal imposed both radical and conservative ideals into the American society causing Franklin D. Roosevelt to leave his ...view middle of the document...

Government regulation is also seen in the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in which Roosevelt headed Joseph P. Kennedy to “oversee financial markets by licensing investment dealers, monitoring all stock transactions, and requiring corporate officers to make full disclosures about their companies.” Because Roosevelt was trying to save the economy from the Great Depression, he imposed many radical changes such as this to try and regulate the economy.
This government regulation also imposed enterprise interaction and social programs creating what became known as the Welfare State. With the Works Progress Administration giving millions jobs on public work projects and elderly citizens benefiting from Social Security in 1935, the American welfare state expanded. The welfare programs that were created showed considerable forms of radical change throughout the country. Although many citizens benefitted from this, many citizens also did not. In a letter to President Roosevelt, a woman complains that the welfare programs never solved the problems of the poor person but instead only make the “rich man richer.” Many other citizens’ also felt this way as the welfare programs did little to help their struggling family. Since the Social Security Act excluded domestic and agricultural workers as well as citizens employed by other various organizations, it left many workers with little money or aid, and those who benefitted most were the ones who did not need it. Conservatives against social security at the time argued “the government will ruin private property, destroy initiative, and reduce proud individuals to spineless loafers.” These three concerns influenced conservative’s thoughts in most of Roosevelt’s New Deal programs; because of all the change, conservatives believed the radical movements would destroy America’s democratic government. Conservatism shows through the inefficiency of the Welfare State, even though it represented radical changes.
More social programs continued to challenge conservative models with their radical changes while both helping and hindering certain citizens in the American social sphere. By 1945, the highest union representation in American history was reached in response to the Wagner Act, which imposed federal law onto enterprises allowing workers to organize unions. This unionization movement had a huge impact on the American society as it led many factory workers and unskilled laborers the ability to fight for better working rights and wages. Because most of the programs applied by the New Deal at this time did not affect the lower working class, this program was a big hit. Unions are a classic example of traditional conservative ideals. The Wagner Act drastically helped many immigrants, African Americans, and women who could not gain any help from Social security, yet many industries still opposed unions and fought against them hindering those ineligible for other programs. Because discrimination still...

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