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When Confederate General Robert Lee E. announced his formal surrender more than 150 years ago, the Civil War was brought to an end. Preoccupied with the challenges of the present moment, America citizens will continue to place limited focus to the sesquicentennial of reconstruction, the disturbing and turbulent period that followed the conflict. The history of the United States’ Reconstruction to Present is an examination of the past events in the American calendar stretching from the era of the Civil War to the current period. Particular emphasis is placed on the major economic, political, and social movements of the present century. Shortly after the American Civil War (1865-77), attempts were being made to seek solutions for the problems of slavery and the related social, political, and economic legacy and to redress the crisis presented from the readmission. The formal unification includes an attempt to consolidate the interests of the 11 states that had seceded during the course of the war and shortly after. The new deal presented by Reconstruction to Present offered practical solutions that helped to enhance the socioeconomic welfare of the United States citizens.
During the First World War, there were disturbing limitations placed on citizens. The government decided to adopt a set of resolutions that cracked down on civil liberties in the course of the war. Widespread dissent was clearly apparent and was linked to the draft and entering the war (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014). The government decided to react by passing the Espionage Act in 1917 (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014). Though the new law was designed to counter the forces of dissent, the courts took advantage of it to execute punishment to those who did not agree with its terms. In 1918, the government introduced a Sedition Act that added move vigor to the Espionage Act and its objective included criminalizing any act that was perceived as rebellious against the government or using languages that were deemed as profane.
According to the documents presented in this collection, even though in some ways the concept of freedom has never received a major definition, it remains a timeless concept that also professes a single and unchanging definition (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014). In fact, the United States history majorly comprises of the struggles and debates over freedom (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014). Crises such as the Civil War, the American Revolution, and the Cold War were extremely effective because they placed a fundamental role in transforming the meaning of the term “freedom.”
The Committee on Public Information, also known as the Creel Committee or the CPI, was an independent agency that was established by the United States government to alter public opinion so as to favor participation in the First World War. It was an independent entity that spent close to 26 months to create considerable enthusiasm for the war initiatives and also ensured that as many members of the public participate in support of forces that were against the perceived and foreign domestic attempts to stop America from participating in the war.
Reconstruction to Present was seen as particularly influential in promoting patriotism and combating dissident forces. For instance, the United States Post Office, some private individuals, and entities such as the American Protective League (APL) were set up to deal with people who were perceived as rebellious to the policies that the government established in relation to the war. Secondly, the APL also forced some German-Americans to sign an oath of allegiance that confirmed their loyalty to the government and safety for other American citizens. One important task that the United States Post Office conducted was to confiscate the magazines of companies that were deemed to be unpatriotic (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014). As a result, over 2, 000 people were subjected to harsh punishment for opposing the war and the judiciary made them spends 10 to 20 years in prison as a way of showing its eagerness in dealing with dissident forces (European Conference on Computer Vision, & In Fleet, 2014).
During World War I, there were various forms of coercive patriotism. The government adopted some measures that were aimed to force the citizens to support its mission of taking an active role in World War I. One of the ways entailed the use of strong propaganda that would make the people concur with the administration’s ideologies. Coercive patriotism was also evident in the government’s efforts to advertise and compel the citizens to buy war bonds. Extending soft and hard loans to the government were perceived as ways of proving one’s patriotism to the government in its efforts of war.
Reconstruction to Present was seen as a new deal that offered practical solutions that helped to enhance the socioeconomic welfare of the United States citizens. It included the period after the First World War when the government decided to address the social, economic, and political problems that were connected to the war. In other words, it sought to improve the relationship between the federal government and the American citizens so that they could assume an active role in shaping the economy.
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