Problems and Promises of the New Nation and its Government from 1789 to 1815
The period from 1789 to 1815 is very important in American history because it is the period in which there was post Americans’ acquisition of their own independent and new government, a first president, a new Constitution and its ratification (Sage, 2010). This came after a long struggle, which included the revolutionary period. This is the period that saw the violations of the people’s rights seen in the Constitution and The Bill of right promises. The violations were committed through the Sedition and the Alien Acts and the Whiskey Rebellion. Although this was a new beginning for the Americans, it came around with its challenges and promises, which were to be encountered and fulfilled.
The Whiskey Rebellion took place in 1794 due to a Whiskey Tax that was not approved by the Western farmers who still believed in Crevecoeur’s vision. This was a violation to the constitution promise. It violated the constitution promise of the government’s law enforcement right. It provoked the army’s action so that the protestors would calm down. Fortunately, no resistance took place at the end of the rebellion. This toughened the authority and the power of the federal. In addition, it was a good foundation for the development of a country. It also prepared the federal and the whole country for more similar rebellions and wars as new eras came into being.
At around the year 1798, the Alien and Sedition Act was passed. This was a violation to the Bill of Rights Promise. The Alien Act authorized the president to arrest and deport alien-suspects (Wood 105). These were mostly those aliens who were suspected of committing treason. The Sedition Act allowed the punishment of any individual who spoke malicious or false things against the federal/government. Instead of being protective, the law became a scapegoat for malicious activity. The Federalists put into conviction twenty-five Republicans on the grounds of this law (Sage, 2010).
Due to such biasness, the Supreme Court granted the citizens the freedom of press and speech. This made the expression of an opinion concerning the government not to be taken as a crime; it was in favor of the Republicans’ opinion. The Alien and Sedition Acts were also done away with, which showed the power of the government. Additionally, it showed that the check and balance system in a country’s leadership structure was very important.
The Bill of Rights was to be constituted due to the loss of lives and the suffering of the people. This mostly took place due to the wars and other happenings that were taken advantage of since these rights were not constituted. Inclusive of the rights, was another emerging campaign, which advocated for the release of the slaves (Horsman 120). However, this took longer as they were released in Abraham Lincoln’s era. The Bill of rights was presented forth as the ten Constitution amendments. These rights were written by Madison. Another promise made included the restructuring of the economy, which had gone down due the war that took place during the revolutionary period. This is why there was a Whiskey tax increment. The additional tax was meant to add the amount of government resources to help in the restructuring.
Horsman, Reginald. The New Republic: The United States of America 1789-1815 (Longman History of America). New York, NY: Longman/Pearson Education, Limited, 2000. Print.
Sage, Henry. “The New Republic: The United States, 1789-1800.” Academic American, 15 September, 2010. Web. 17 October, 2011.
Wood, Gordon. Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2009. Print.