The Fourteenth Amendment Essay

755 words - 3 pages

On a date that will be remembered forever as a step forward for our nation, July 28, 1868, the Fourteenth Amendment became part of the U.S. Constitution. The Fourteenth Amendment gave a new sense of hope and inspiration to a once oppressed people. It was conceived to be the foundation for restoring America to its great status and prosperity. The Amendment allowed “equal protection under the law”, no matter what race, religion, sex, sexual preference or social status. It was designed to protect the newly freed slaves. However, it only helped the white race.

Congress passed the Fourteenth Amendment not knowing how it would affect all the other minorities. Minorities were still treated with disrespect and incivility from the white culture.

With Americans pioneering westward, they found a strong-willed people with a simple way of life, the Indians. The conquering American pioneers tried to push their way of life upon the Indians. They directed what the Indians should do, what to eat, and whom or what they should believe in. With the Indians refusing this way of life, and the ensuing battles over their land, put up an immensely hard fought battle against the United States Military led by General Custer. General Custer was facing a leader, a holy man, and an impressive war chief who the Indians had great respect for, Sitting Bull. Sitting Bull vowed to eliminate the American invaders, but came to his demise with a shot to the chest and slash to the back of the head by a Ceska Maza, killing him instantly. The Americans eventually won and pushed the Indians onto convenient reservations, depriving them of their rights, and discarding the idea of equal protection under the law.

For the greater part of the nineteenth century, black people were slaves for white men. The Fourteenth Amendment was placed into effect to protect the rights of the black community after emancipation. It stated that, “all persons born or naturalized in the United States” would be supported under the doctrine. However, this article failed to uphold the rights of the newly freed slaves. The blacks, ridiculed and scorned by the public, were greatly suppressed by the white backlash. The states put into effect laws that would suppress the blacks even further, even though they were...

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