The USA uniquely benefited from the scientific revolution and the industrial revolution eventually becoming an industrial powerhouse. What is usually forgotten is the reason the US got there was on the backs of the working class a history that is not usually taught. Instead we are told to focus on great industrialists not the people who made those industries great. It is easy to forget how the USA achieved its status in the world.
I read the article “The Civil War Doctor Who Proved Phantom Limb Pain Was Real” by Alicia Puglionesi. It was really interesting to me, because my major and career is in healthcare. Apparently, it was safer to just perform limb amputations, so there were a lot of veterans with amputated limbs (the article says three minutes!!) before and after the Civil War. The article follows Dr. Mitchell, who sought to treat veterans for phantom limb pain and the struggles he faced in trying to do so, especially since doctors at the time believed what they had physical evidence of, and nerve pain is not something so easily ‘seen’. I though this article was very interesting, and it seemed to tie in well with what we’re learning about now. Also, I was wondering if Louisa May Alcott who wrote about phantom limb pain was related to the Alcott in the novel we are reading for class. Both rely heavily on religion it seems, so I’d be interested to know!
Do you think that President Polk presented a war letter without the intentions of going to war? After the reading, i kind of have a personal opinion that maybe his hopes just didn’t go as he had planned? I feel like he may have presented it in hopes that Mexico would hand over the rights to the land without proceeding to war.
We’ve had a lot of reading about slavery in this class that have explained how people tried to justify enslaving people. It’s always shocking to learn about this but this weeks reading was just unbelievable. To say that enslaved people wanting to be free and run away, is a disease is ridiculous. It’s always amusing to hear the ways that people would try and make slavery seem okay. You can’t just come up with a “disease” to describe a behavior that you don’t support. Part of me wants to believe that this was just lack of education on their part and truly not understanding how actual diseases and mental illnesses work, but in reality it is probably just ignorance and racism.
I have to rant about this a little bit, mostly because I am going into the (and currently am in) the healthcare field. The reading, for those who did it, details illnesses that are unique to negros, which includes the want/need to run away. I think this is ridiculous, and it just goes to show how FAR people were willing to go to justify that what they were doing was good and right. Cognitive dissonance is the psychology term used to describe anything that we find unpleasant. Say you don’t like broccoli. But you have to eat it every day. Eventually, because you are so upset about having to eat broccoli your brain will tell you hey, actually, you love broccoli! I think the same applies to slavery. There is NO WAY that people really, truly believed they were being humane. I think that they knew it was wrong, but were selfish, and the dissonance led them to believe anything that might possibly make what they were doing ok in their minds. Not that that’s any excuse, but to think that wanting to run away from slavery was an illness is absurd!
From my journey reading blogs and message boards across the internet I have come across a interesting argument that people on the right side of the political spectrum tend to make when confronted with the idea of what should we do with the government. The right wing in the American political landscape on the libertarian side makes the argument that the government should only be as large as was originally envisioned in the constitution. Then a convoluted argument is created to attempt to justify the destruction of various government programs. The right libertarians argue that since taxation is theft all of those programs the government funds with tax are immoral since the money is stolen. Mu take on the matter is that argument is absolute nonsense and clinging to how the country was in the past is counterproductive. It reminds me a lot of the federalists and anti-federalist arguments that we read about earlier in the course.
I found this weeks readings to be very interesting about women abolitionists in America and how they had set the foundation for womens rights later on down the line. The way that we live in today’s society, I think we sometimes forget to look back at how women were treated throughout history and realize that they are the reason we are treated equally now. Everything that we are able to do today is because these women were brave enough to stand up for themselves and all women to eventually be able to do all the things that were once only for men.
As the economy changes due to vastly increasing technology the threat of automation looms over many workers in the United States. While many US workers are no stranger to automation recent developments in AI and software engineering now make even supposedly safe white collar jobs under threat. Self driving vehicles stand to disrupt the massive transportation industry in the United States and its unknown if new jobs that are tech related will be created in sufficient quantities to replace existing workers. What will the US do in the future as unemployment continues to rise? Will we go down the road of more government programs? Or will the US attempt to do nothing and watch the economic model revert to serfdom?
How did photographs impact the Civil War? Photographs were only about twenty years old when the Civil War started. People knew that the war scene was bad but never really had to see it. Not until the Civil War. Officers had their photos taken as well and often passed them out to the men as a morale booster. President Abraham Lincoln had his photograph taken to boost his campaign. Military leaders on both sides also hired photographers to gain intelligence about enemy emplacements, roads, bridges and railroads. Intense images of battlefield horrors were presented to the public for the first time at exhibits in New York and Washington, many later reproduced by engravings in newspapers and magazines of the time.
I believe that even today photographs of war have an impact on people. I mean we do live in the era where we talk with photographs. But I feel like most people want to see the devastation’s of war. We today are numb with death and violence. So I do not think it would be a shock like it was back in the 19th century but maybe a cry and more political.
This is going to be extremely opinionated, so please beware. Never have I ever been so irritated that I had to put a book down and stop reading. The amount of loathing that I have for the state of Georgia is unreal. I would say that I can’t believe that the human race could conceive such bigotry and idiocy but that would be a lie. The treatment of the Native Americans in the early 1800’s defied common sense. I have no idea where the idea that Europeans were ‘civilized’ came from, but I have high suspicions that the attitude had something to do with the fact that Europe was compromised of primarily monarchies. Such self-important attitudes and feelings of superiority are to me, horrible, and probably American citizen’s way of trying to mirror the importance of monarchy after escaping it. Georgians acted like children: spoiled children. And they were never punished for it. Every sentence I read in this book I just go more and more insane. We criticize our government now, but look what it was doing in the 1800’s! The novel even mentions that THE MAJORITY of Americans did not support removal (even if their reasons were skewed). Why is it that the government can proceed with things that the people don’t want? How is that a democracy? It drives me crazy (then, and now!) that the majority is not represented at all within our government.