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Causes of Progressivism

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Randall Wilson

on 24 October 2013

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Transcript of Causes of Progressivism

Causes and Effects of Progressivism
The Gilded Age Review

Iron Law of Wages

Thomas Malthus - overpopulation is a problem; natural fixes to overpopulation

All attributed to social problems

Investigative reporters wanting to raise awareness to
, and
problems in urban America

Among the first Progressives
Reporters were looking to
problems in urban America

Leads to major reforms from 1900 to the 1920s
Remember Jacob Riis?
Teddy Roosevelt (1906)
"Now, it is very necessary that we should not flinch from seeing what is
. There is
on the floor, and it must be scraped up with the
muck rake
; and there are times and places where this service is the most needed of all the services that can be performed. But the man who never does anything else, who never thinks or speaks or writes, save of his feats with the muck rake, speedily becomes, not a help but one of the most potent forces for evil.... The effort to make financial or political profit out of the destruction of character can only result in calamity."
What reforms?
Better representation for the average citizen

Better education

Trust Busting

Social Work

Middle Class
America and WASP - White Anglo-Saxon Protestant


Upper Class Women
Who were muckrakers appealing to?
Government Reformation

Laboratory of Democracy

Suffragist Movement
Seneca Falls, NY - Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony- right to vote should be #1 priority
72 years until the 19th Amendment
Following 14th and 15th Amendments movement split in two
Social Reforms
Child Labor

Health and Safety


Big Business
How to improve gov't efficiency?
Scientific Method of Business

Reform needed to start at the local level
How to make the US more democratic?
Robert La Follette and the direct primary
- introduce legislation and require legislature to vote on
- vote directly on laws w/o the legislature
- option to remove elected officials from office by vote
17th Amendment
The Senate of the US shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years
direct election of Senators
Two main groups merged under leadership of Stanton
Carrie Chapman Catt
Women deserve vote b/c they are
like men
Women are morally superior
Women's vote would counter the socialists immigrants entering US
National American Woman Suffrage Association
National Woman Suffrage Association
Stanton & Anthony - "the irreconcilables"
Split in response to the 15th Amendment
Men allowed, but leadership stayed in the hands of women
Constitutional Amendment
American Woman Suffrage Association
Founders were abolitionists - members were women and men
Campaign within states to gain the vote for women
Appeal to States
Big Business
ICC - regulate transportation

Trust Busters - Sherman Anti Trust
Roosevelt and Wilson

Socialism - Gov't should own and operate industry
Eugene V. Debs - Union leader, founded IWW
Successful, but not that successful - ran for Pres. 5 times, last time from prison
John Spargo - "The Bitter Cry of the Children"
Minimum age
Maximum hours

Represented "cultural lag"
Children had always worked on the farm or in small shops

Compulsory Education
Child Labor
In "The Jungle"
exposed atrocities of meat packing
"aimed at the heart, hit it in the stomach"
Quickly pushed legislation through Congress - Meat inspection and Pure Food and Drug Act
Zoning laws and safety regulations
Workman's comp
Limiting hours
Health and Safety
Alcohol and Saloons
Noble Experiment - Can you legislate morality?
Carry Nation - Wichita, KS - hatchetations
18th Amendment - make, transport, or sell
Prohibition "made common man criminals and criminals common"
Big time Organized Crime - Mafia

Catholics and Jews use alcohol as part of religious observance
Full transcript