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Did Andrew Jackson's Removal Policy Benefit Native Americans?

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Did Andrew Jackson's removal policy benefit Native Americans?

While America expanded Americans moved West, but encountered a problem, Indians. Wanting more land for farming settlers looked at settling Indian land. Some bought this land from Indians, but most resorted to the government. Andrew Jackson, seventh President of the United States was a strong supporter of removing Indians from Western Lands. In 1814 he used military force to drive out the Creek nation and acquire Western land. In one decade after that Jackson negotiated 9 treaties which gave America Western land. Did Andrew Jackson's removal policy benefit Native Americans or was acquiring Western land a selfish desire to fulfill Manifest Destiny?

Robert Remini believes that Andrew Jackson's removal policy benefited Native Americans. Remini argues that Jackson knew the tension between White settlers and Natives was escalating. He merely pushed the Natives to the West before a massive war broke out between the two parties. He wanted to help the Indians escape the effects that would "entail the destruction upon their race." Andrew Jackson was sympathetic in all of his dealings with Native Americans. he even adopted a Native and treated him as his own son. The Native's were not very happy with White settlers living in their land either. One Indian chief said White people were opening drinking houses and teaching their children how to use guns. They were stealing land and destroying their culture. Jackson's one option was to push Indians West and by doing so he saved many Indian lives.

Alfred Cave disagrees with Remini, claiming that Jackson used his power selfishly. He believes that Jackson disregarded an important section of the Indian Removal Act, as well as "misused the powers" that were given to him under the Trade and Intercourse Act of 1802. He broke a number of treaties, some he had personally made. Cave argues that the treaties with the United States claimed that they protected the rights against encroachment, but we're only temporary privileges that were going to be taken away at a certain point. It was nothing more than an "empty gesture" to please the Indians. Jackson realized that the way he had set up the Indian Removal Act, it was never going to pass through Congress. Jackson in response did not ask for forced removal, but instead for voluntary removal. He used his power to drive the Indians across the Mississippi. Jackson's only reason for his insistence on voluntary removal was to make himself look better politically. He badly needed the votes the House of Representatives could give him and did not care for the Indians. His program was anything but voluntary. Indians reported "fraud, coercion, corruption and malfeasance" in the negotiation of removal treaties and in their execution. Settlers were cheating Indians out



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