Gilded Age: Causes and Consequences
Why Was It Called the Gilded Age?
There have been so many ages since the time of men on earth, from the stone age to the age we are present which many people would call the Technology age or the jet age, be that as it may, the Gilded Age is one age that was known all through the united states as the age between the civil war that broke out and the world war I that affected the world.
The Question Is, Why Was It Called the Gilded Age?
The age was seen as a time where there was plenty to spend and also death all over, it was called the Glided age by a man named Mark Twin and that was about the 19th century, because of the way that age was glittering with money and all the fine things of life but that was on the surface so he said as what lays beneath all this glittering was the outrageous corruption that was going on. Many persons would not know the corruption that took place during that time as all they could say was the way things where moving on smoothly and money was all over the place.
Life in the Gilded Age:
During the Gilded age that is as we all know by now which was between the time of the civil war that broke out in the country and also the World War I, people living in that country enjoyed what you would call growth both numerically and economically, but one key thing that was known for in this age was the high rate of corruption which made a lot of persons to be very rich because of the way the money was been controlled by a particular set of corrupt persons. The country in that age was fancy on the outside as other nations could see the way the United States was moving quickly into urban cities, but the truth behind this fancy life or glittering show is the corruption beneath it, which in turn affected the industrial workers and peasants, farmers, as they were getting poorer by the day, but people watching from the International scene would never know that there is such level of poverty in the state because of the glittering things they are seeing. Now we would look at some of the facts about life in the gilded age and how it turned The United States of America to a world power today.
1. The Railroad Came to Play :
The gilded age ushered in the railroad which became a lucrative source of income and a boost to the economy at that time. The railroad connected the united states to different parts of the world which made the country's economy bigger because transportation of goods in and out of the country was flowing consistently.
2. Jobs Boost:
With the introduction of the railroad made a lot of impacts when it comes to job opportunities. Young people got jobs with the railway stations and even if they are not educated they could work on different parts of the railway station, from being a labourer in the station to being a brakeman or even a conductor. The jobs were not only for those that didn't go to school but also for persons that where educated, engineering became a core subject in the universities which gave raise to engineers as they could work on the engines and other technical areas of the railway stations.
Politics in the Gilded Age:
In the gilded age, politics was played in a whole different way, the system is called 'The Third Party system' the political power of this age was tossed by two strong political parties, while the rest of the parties which you can call the lesser parties would come and go as they are not static, most of them would even merge with one of the strong political parties. The two parties are the Republican and the democrat parties, yes they are still ruling almost all the political offices in the united states up till today. During the gilded age, the competition between these parties was really tight and one would take the win over the other in parts of the country because of the number of political members in that area or region. Let's see how the system was corrupt in this age when it comes to politics.
Corruption In Election:
The system was totally corrupt and was not free and fair at all, as rich and influential businessmen know that when the opposing party wins the business would be regulated not to favour him or her, especially because they know they are mostly involved in illegal business and money laundering. The political system was so corrupt that it got to a point where they made bribery legal and it was fixed in the constitution and was followed suit. So when a corrupt man bribes anyone in the system it is not seen as a crime rather a kind gesture towards you.
This gave rise to many things that made sure the system was bad and not good swindlers made a lot of money and got away with it because the law gives them the right to do anything.
The political shop agree age was one that anyone would say has no value for fairness, so anyone who would not allow the growth of corruption would be taken out of the equation with the power of their wealth and influence they have built up over time. Very few natives in this age would vote for the democrat parties as they always complain that they are more focused on the immigrant rather than the natives of the land, so the majority of votes comes from the immigrant'ss region, while the Republican Party got a good number of votes from the natives because they say they get good things whenever a Republican is on a political seat.
The Dark Side to the Gilded Age:
The Gilded age is one age that is known for bringing urbanization to the United States but many did not know the dark stories that were associated to the growth of the country, the measures that wertattaken before they could achieve a lot of things in such a short time. In this section,, we'll take you through some of the dark stories about the gilded age which was all because of greed and corruption as you would know by now.
1. Poor working Conditions:
During this age, the workforce was working in a condition that you would consider very dangerous to both the health of the worker and also instant loss of life of that worker. The places where this work usually takes place can be an open field, let's take for example workers building the railroad, they employers don't care if the weather is fair or very bad, the workers are told to work or else they would lose their job, because of the level of poverty among the low-class individuals they need the job or else they would starve to death, so you find out some of them losing their lives as a result of poor health care or even cold or dehydration.
2. Urbanisation :
With the rise of urban cities made a lot of persons moving towards this city for greener pastures. Thousands of persons lived in this cities because that is the only place you could get a good job and a good source of income to feed your yourself and your family, this made the cities overcrowded and overpopulated. With overpopulation means that diseases and congestion are not far from the equation. Sickness could spread easily and because the population is too much the transmission becomes very easy and fast to transmits, a lot of persons died during this age because of sickness and disease transmitted from one person to another.
3. Environmental problems:
This age was the age that gave rise the industrial age, with railways and industrial companies coming up here and there, the environment became very bad and unhealthy for living, the rivers became bad for fishing because of the waste materials that come out the big industrial companies. Also, the air was not good for breathing as this result in various respiratory problems and eventually deaths.
This is one of the major problems when it comes to the gilded age, the big companies would not allow the smaller ones to grow, as they would want to use all means necessary to kill every form of competition and there was no law that will kick against this act. This made the rich get richer because once they are the only company in the market they could increase the price of their goods and no one would complain because there is no other way to get those goods.
The Gilded age can not be seen to be all bad even if the name was given because of the outer good looks it gave to the people and the underground corruption that was making the rich richer and the poor poorer, we can also say it was the necessary step that this great country took to become one of the greatest countries in the world.