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U.S. History Paper Submission

The United States is a nation founded on the principles of democracy, equality, and freedom. This country was born out of a rich history of colonization and revolution, as well as slavery and civil rights movements. This country has been shaped by many different groups of people who have come together to make one unified culture. It is important to remember that these cultural influences have shaped this country’s history for better or for worse. In this paper, I shall touch on a number of both primary and secondary sources on memorable events in American history that could help you as an inspiring candidate to lead effectively.

Primary Sources

To begin with, Angelina Grimke’s speech, On Sexes equality, was delivered in 1838 and has been credited with inspiring the women’s suffrage movement. In her speech, Grimke discusses her support for abolitionism, which she believes is necessary to achieve true equality between men and women (Lee 3). Grimke’s speech, therefore, provides remarkable insight into what you should know about American history. In order to be an effective leader, you must uphold equality regardless of gender, bearing in mind that this an issue that has been there since history, and thus it might still exist or find its way back. Being a leader, Grimke’s speech thus should give you the strength to fight against any form of gender inequalities in the country for you to stand out effectively.

In addition, Claude McKay’s remarkable poem, “If We Must Die” (1919), was inspired by the violence and race riots that occurred in Tulsa, Oklahoma, during the summer of 1921. It reflects on the racial hatred that fueled these events and the endurance of African-Americans in the face of such hatred (Jarrett 11). The speaker in this poem does not believe that his people should be forced to live under slavery again but instead calls for them to rise and fight back against those who seek to oppress them. As an inspiring candidate, you must be at the forefront to fight any future race-centered discrimination and champion equality and freedom. Such historical information is essential to you as an incoming leader since it helps identify the cause of such racism and thus come up with the best ways to prevent its recurrence.

Similarly, “An Appeal for Human Rights” by Brown v. is a primary source that details the Supreme Court’s decision to end segregation in schools. The document recounts the history of segregation and discrimination against African Americans (Marshall 23). Also, Martin Luther’s “letter from a Birmingham Jail” is a letter he wrote to his fellow clergymen after criticizing his non-violent protest in Birmingham, Alabama (Jarrell 2). In the letter, King outlines how he believes that the United States is founded upon principles of justice and equality but that those principles have not always been honored by its citizens or leaders. As an aspiring 2024 presidential candidate, it is important to understand that America’s history of racial discrimination continues to impact many people, including those born after these events happened. This should also push you into examining how such discrimination has and continues to affect the country and therefore come up with the best strategies to settle it.

Moreover, in his “Emancipation Proclamation” Abraham Lincoln made the case to abolish slavery in America. He argued that continuing slavery would undermine the Union and tarnish America’s reputation as a country founded on freedom and equality (Lincoln 1). The Emancipation Proclamation was a turning point in American history because it helped end slavery and is considered one of Lincoln’s greatest achievements. As an aspiring presidential candidate, such a memorable proclamation by Abraham Lincoln clearly indicates how fearless and relentless you ought to be in decision-making, especially on what you know is right for your country. At certain points, you may be forced to make a decision, especially on matters that would ruin the reputation of your country, such as race, gender, sex, or ethnic-based discrimination.

Secondary Sources

Further, the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution of the United States form a very important basis for you as an aspiring leader. These were passed during the Reconstruction Era, which began after the Civil War and ended in 1877 with the Compromise of 1877. These amendments aimed to protect formerly enslaved people’s rights by ensuring they had equal rights as citizens (Lawrence 146). In addition, these amendments overturned many laws supporting slavery, which ruled that enslaved people could not be citizens and had no rights under federal law. You need to know the existence of such amendments and the main cause of their institution since, possibly, there are still some traces of discrimination left within the country. However, you should not just master them but use them to reinforce and wipe out any form of unlawfulness in the future.

Furthermore, “When Forced Sterilization was Legal” by Matthew Willis creates a dark American historical period that no aspiring leader should ever entertain. The practice began in the early 1900s when eugenics was a popular movement that sought to improve the human race by preventing people with undesirable traits from reproducing (Bocquillon 2). As an aspiring presidential candidate, you need to understand this demeaning aspect of American history and the levels of cruelty involved in such acts. Having that in mind, you would examine if there are still such unnoticeable laws within the country and make informed future declarations regarding the same for effective leadership.

In conclusion, in order to be an effective president in 2024, it is no doubt that you must have a strong understanding of the history of America. This includes knowing about the Reconstruction Amendments and their impact on American society and having a thorough knowledge of the civil rights movement and its leaders. In addition, candidates need to understand how these events have shaped modern American society and culture. Overall, it is essential for it would act as an eye-opener on the areas that still need correction for effective governance.

Works Cited

Bocquillon, Sandrine Piorkowski. “Sterilization in the United States: The dark side of contraception.” Revue de recherche en civilization américaine 8 (2018).1-16.

Jarrett, Denise. “Critical Race Theory: Claude McKay’s “If We Must Die” and Other Poems of Resistance as a Manifesto for# Black Lives Matter.”1-21

Jarrell, Bruce E. “Reflection on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day 2021.” 2021 .1-3.

Lee, Frances. “Weighing Petitioning in the Balance.” Social Science History 2022: 1–4.

Lincoln, Abraham. “The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863.” The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration 2019. 1.

Lawrence, Michael A. “Symposium: Examining Black Citizenship from Reconstruction to Black Lives Matter: Falling Short of the Promise of the Thirteenth Amendment: Time for Change.” ConLawNOW 12.2 2020: 2. 143–155.

Marshall, Thurgood. “BROWN AND THE MUDDLED REALITIES OF PUBLIC EDUCATION.” Audacious Agitation: The Uncompromising Commitment of Black Youth to Equal Education after Brown 2021: 17.1-39.


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