1987 Dbq Analysis

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Janet Guzman-Garcia Period 6 12/06/10 1987 DBQ The Constitution of the United States during the 1850’s had become “source of sectional discord and tension and ultimately contributed to the failure of the union it had created.” This completely contradicted why it had first been created in 1787 which was to be “an instrument of national unity.” There are several passages in the Constitution which contributed to the disunity of the union. “To the argument, that the words ‘slaves’ and ‘slavery’ are not to be found in the Constitution, and therefore that it was never intended to give any protection or countenance to the slave system…” (Doc. E) William Lloyd Garrison, in this passage, says that due to the fact that slavery is not in the Constitution, it could be interpreted in any way. We can see an interpretation of this in the Great Compromise.…show more content…
This is shown in the Compromise of 1850 and the Fugitive Slave Act. The new states of Utah and New Mexico had the liberty to decide whether they wanted slavery or not it under popular sovereignty. This would have been hard for the “free” states because the Fugitive Slave Act commanded the capture of any runaway slavery. These states then began creating personal liberty laws for the slaves. In Document C, a flier announcing a caution for all colored people, it is seen that the North’s goal was to liberate colored people. Ralph Waldo Emerson, in Document D, criticizes this law by stating “…it is piracy and murder, punishable with death, to enslave a man on the coast of Africa, By law of Congress…it is a high crime and misdemeanor, punishable with fine and imprisonment, to resist the enslaving a man on the coast of America…What kind of legislation is this? What kind of Constitution which covers it?…” This address on The Fugitive Slave Law could have greatly insulted Southerners causing them to have a grudge against the North and the whole

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