Populating the United States

Populating the United States

It is the mid-1800’s in an ever-changing 19th century. The phrase “Manifest Destiny” is believed to have been created by an editor of the Democratic Review and the Morning News by the name of John O’Sullivan. “Manifest Destiny held that the United States was destined—by God, its advocates believed—to expand its dominion and spread democracy and capitalism across the entire North American continent” (History, 2010). Just like the idea of Manifest Destiny suggests, the U.S. is in a period of new development. In a whirlwind of major changes, the United States experiences things such as the state of Texas entering the U.S. as a slave state, a boundary dispute with Britain over the Oregon territory, and the Mexican War. The United States experiences this constant push for change and an expansion out West. Railcars are running and treading upon new territory, gold is being discovered in California, and the issue of slavery is highly debated. One aspect of Manifest Destiny is the belief that the American culture and government is the best. Along this same line of thought, many companies vye for the “best place to work” in their area or region. This is a coveted title which employers hope will attract quality employees. In essence, they have the same feelings of superiority that are seen in the Manifest Destiny in their workplace. This time period was also known as the Age of Imperialism. ‘American imperialism’ is a term that refers to the economic, military, and cultural influence of the United States on other countries. First popularized during the presidency of James K. Polk, the concept of an “American Empire” was made a reality throughout the latter half of the 1800s. During this time, industrialization caused American businessmen to seek new international markets in which to sell their goods. In addition, the increasing influence of social Darwinism led to the belief that the United States was inherently responsible for bringing concepts such as industry, democracy, and Christianity to less developed “savage” societies. The combination of these attitudes and other factors led the United States toward imperialism. (Lumen Boundless US History, n.d., Expansion and Power, para. 1) Various groups were impacted negatively when it came to changes and ideas happening across the United States during this time. American Imperialism changed the demographics of the United States in the following ways: Native Americans were removed by force from the land east of the Mississippi River to the west. Chinese immigrants were prohibited from becoming an American citizen because “Americans” were felt threatened by the high influx of new immigrants coming to seek gold and work on railroad expansion Mexican immigrants were forced to march back to their homeland. This legacy affects United States society and workplaces today in that these minority groups are just in the recent past able to have the freedom to obtain work in higher paying jobs. Up until the Civil Rights Act of 1964, these groups experienced hardship when trying to obtain work. These groups consist of but are not limited to Baby Boomers, African Americans, Native Americans, and Immigrants. The Civil Rights Act helped move equality recognition along because it was now prohibited to discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. This paved the way for a diverse workplace. We see today how there are more diverse management teams. Boardrooms that were once filled with only men, are now seeing women. Multiple ethnicities can now be found in many offices. How do these events of the past affect us today? During the 1900’s women were taking even more of a stand to be heard and recognized as equal citizens. For example, women fought for the right to vote until it was granted in 1920 with the 19th amendment. This movement and discovery has changed our society and economics in many ways. For example, people moved from the farm to the city for opportunities to work and live. In the workplace, of course, there have been many changes made since the 1900’s. But we can retrace history’s footsteps back to this industrial age and contribute some of today’s opportunities and societal norms to this time period. Even though there were many negative effects from expansion felt by immigrant groups and from natives of our land, one positive outlook that developed from the age of Manifest Destiny and American Imperialism was the idea of the “American Dream.” To date, people still coin the term and try to achieve this ultimate status. By setting out to achieve their dreams by working hard and expanding to new “territories,” companies and businessmen and women try to still acquire the “American Dream.” The “American Dream” is often seen as an extension of the Manifest Destiny in that Americans feel that their way of life is the best and that they can attain the best life possible through hard work. In addition to this, the Monroe Doctrine, American Indian policies, slave codes, and territorial annexations have increased diversity in American society and economics today. More people of minorities are able to obtain jobs due to freedoms granted to the American Indians and the former slaves. The Monroe Doctrine and territorial annexations increased the lands where these freedoms were made available to individuals. Of course, these added people affect your career opportunities today in that you will be competing with more individuals for the same jobs. On a positive note, your experience with diversity in the workplace only strengthens your position but the team as a whole. References History. (2010). Manifest Destiny. Retrieved from https://www.history.com/topics/manifest-destiny (Links to an external site.) Lumen Boundless US History. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://courses.lumenlearning.com/boundless-ushistory/chapter/american-imperialism/ (Links to an external site.) Prompt For this assignment, you will continue to ponder the immigration and expansion ideas and mindset of the individuals in the early 20th century. Assignment Instructions: In a paper of at least 600 words using two sources (an outside source and one of your readings or videos in class are fine): Discuss how U.S. Imperialism and the Manifest Destiny impact U.S. workplaces today How has U.S. Imperialism changed the demographics in your workplace? Give an example of how at least one group has been impact by U.S. immigration and expansion. Sources must be cited in the text AND in the reference list.