Progressive Era through the Great Depression Essay

Women’s Right Movement and the Stock Market Crash

The Great Depression is synonymous with financial woes that plagued the global economy. However, other key events took place in this era. Key amongst this is the Women’s Right Movement (Lionel, Baron & Murray, 2005). The core rationale behind these movements was to ensure equitability in political, social and economic status between men and women. This fight by women had progressed throughout two centuries (Pierre, 2000). However, considerable achievements were realized during the period of the Great Depression. Examples of theses said gains are the establishment of the UN Commission on women status (Pierre, 2000). These movements fashioned the foundation for the current advances in women rights that are being witnessed in the current society.

The second event this paper will expound is the stock market crash of 1929. The crash has been often cited as among the worst stock market crash in the history of United States. Its impact was so massive; it took the American economy approximately ten years to recover from this fallout. This stock market crash was preceded by a nine year steady rise of the American economy. The magnitude and implications of this crash warrants its classification as a significant turning point in the period of discussion.

911 attacks and Terri Schiavo

The current America society has witnessed several turning points, be it in the economic, political or cultural perspective. However, none rivals the power of the September Eleven attacks as a turning point. These attacks, more than ever, brought to the public light the vanity of American national security forces. It demonstrated just how susceptible the American people were to foreign attack. These attacks instigated radical reforms to the American government and subsequently the introduction of comprehensive security measures (Lionel, Baron & Murray, 2005).

The United States has over the years prided itself with its advanced human rights endeavors. Over the centuries, it has become the epitome of human rights brilliance. It is with this fact in mind that the second turning point is highlighted. It is catastrophic to arrive at the realization that, in this current day and age, the United States government can opt to willingly subject a fellow human being to starvation and dehydration. Terry Schiavo was left to die of starvation and dehydration that culminated in her bleeding to death (Randall, 1998). It is an appalling act that has put the human rights advancement in jeopardy. This single incident has the power to portray Americans as people with complete disregard for human life. Terry Schiavo was a responsive woman whose state of incapacitation signed her death warrant. The extent of public outcry that followed her death depicts the extent to which this was a gross act of negligence (Randall, 1998).

Why western states first

There exists no substantiated assertion as to the reason why western states were more accepting of women suffrage as compared to their eastern counterparts. However, there are some claims that appear to be more logical than the rest. The western states had more male mortality rates as compared to the eastern regions (Thomas, Hall & David, 2009). As such, women were forced, by circumstances, to adopt a more assertive role in their lives. As such, they put themselves in the frontier. This then necessitated their suffrage to be accepted if the western states were to survive. An additional elucidation can be sourced from the relative lower women demographic as compared to the eastern states. The eastern states could afford to dominate their women as they were plenty in supply. However, the western states did not have this luxury. Therefore, they had to institute reforms that would entice the female population to migrate into their region. These reforms majorly included the creation of an enabling environment for women suffrage. This rationale is the more logical one in the class of reasons why western nations were more accepting in regard to women suffrage.

The Meat Inspection Act and the Pure Food and Drug Act

The Meat Inspection Act was enacted to curb the distribution of potentially unsafe meat for human consumption. It was enacted at a time whereby unscrupulous business persons were distributing cheap and unhealthy meat to the American consumers. The act ensured that all meat that was sold had been slaughtered and processed under supervised and hygienic conditions. This act also covers imported meat which has to undergo equivalent inspection procedure.

The pure food and drugs act was enacted purposely to ensure food stuffs were labeled correctly. This had the power to safeguard the American public from false advertising. Manufacturers were required to label their products correctly lest they face criminal action. With time, the law expanded, first, to accommodate products that were not safe for human consumption. Then it further expanded to accommodate products that were safe for human consumption but not effective to the human body.

The role that the Spanish American War played in America's development of an Empire.

Studies have indicated that Spain was fought by the United States in a short war known to have been one sided. This war was a representation of a resurgence and was quite powerful. The war demonstrated the manifest that made the United States to increase its territory westwards through defeating Mexico in the year 1846 to 1848. The main effect of the Spanish-American war is that the United States shifted into being a world power, which managed an empire that stretches from the Sea of Caribbean towards the Far East. During the war, the policies of Valeriano Wayler who was the Spanish general moved all Cubans that were disloyal to Spain and set them in areas that concentrated close to the cities. In these areas, the Cubans were exposed to disease, hunger and sanitation that was poor. When the riots started in Havana, the battleship Maine was sent to Cuba by the United States in order to have the interests of Americans protected. The representatives of America were committed towards an imperialistic expansive policy for the States. Cuba was granted its independence from Spain, and United States acquired Rico Puerto and Guam. The United States paid Spain about 20 million dollars in order to part with Philippines. This made Spain to lose its last world empire remnants and the United States obtained an empire. In order to hold the Philippines, a three-year guerrilla war was set by the United States. Approximately 600,000 Filipinos died in the war against the States.

While moving towards the Pacific the United States realised that it was in competition with the Japan’s rising power (Robert, 2010). The Spanish-American War gave an assurance that Panama Canal was going to be constructed as the United States was in need of an ocean Navy. This made the commerce to flow to both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans (Robert, 2010).

Ways through which the boom and bust of the Roaring twenties along with the Great Depression affected the Federal Government's involvement in the national economy.

As widely cited, the 1920s, were characterized by lots of challenges that impacted heavily to major world economies. Arguably, the boom and bust of the roaring twenties along with the world’s famous Great Depression was felt everywhere. Most notable was its effect on the involvement of the Federal Government in the national economy. Following these tense challenging time, the federal government expanded the government intervention into some new areas of economic and social affairs (Thomas, Hall & David, 2009). Moreover, the Federal government created more social agencies to operate at national level. Through this, the Federal Government promoted free relationship between the people and the national government leading to somewhat drastic changes in the economy (Thomas, Hall & David, 2009). This it did by taking over the greater role in the economic, as well as social everyday lives of the people. By and large, the New Deal programs created by the FDR brought about the creation of the Liberal political alliance, which was constituted by the blacks along with other ethnic, as well as religious minorities, labor unions, the poor, intellectuals, and the farmers (Pierre, 2000). The groups became the diehard of the Democratic Party after the depression. The New Deal measure and the Great depression later led to the popular domestic programs for the JFK’s New Frontier, the War on Poverty and the LBJ’s Great Society (Pierre, 2000).


Lionel R, Baron, R & Murray, W. (2005). The Great Depression. New York: Transaction Publishers.

Pierre, B, (2000). The Great Depression: 1929-1939. Michigan: Doubleday Canada

Robert S. (2010). The Great Depression: America 1929-1941. New York: Crown Publishing Group.

Randall, E, (1998). Reflections on the Great Depression. New York: Edward Elgar,

Thomas E, Hall, J & David F, (2009).The Great Depression: An International Disaster of Perverse Economic Policies. Michigan: University of Michigan Press.