Northup, Solomon. Twelve Years a slave (New York: Penguin Books, 2012). (461)



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Merry, Robert. “Polk’s Peace.” American Heritage (2010): 48-49. (2)
Merry’s piece, “Polk’s Peace” chronicles the work of President James Polk and the advancement of peace through treaty in 1848. The war with Mexico leading up to this date, including the annexation of Texas, was one which was held with animosity on the part of the United States, as “there was no doubt in anyone’s mind that the war…was Polk’s war”.45 Because of a huge lack of loss on the part of Polk’s generals, the war was a military success up Polk voiced his wish for “peace and a chance to position the Democrats to keep the White House”.46 The passing of the peace treaty in 1848 proved to be best for the United States, as well as for Polk, as he knew that continued war with Mexico would bring continued “bloodshed in Mexico and more bitterness at home.47 The action of the Senate to fulfill a wish of the President may not seem that interesting in our day and age, but the passing of a treaty which truly works as an effort to save lives does. Similar to Hicks’ piece, Merry shows that it never has taken just one single man to create a country, a government or maintain the well-being of a nation, but it can easily take one man to create the opposite. As with most relationships, it takes communication to create a healthy rapport with our better halves, even if they happen to be a nation. In this regard, it would be interesting to wonder about what actions in the above articles would have culminated differently had communication and, actual, negotiation been a factor?




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