Dr. Stephen Cory
Race and gender relations progressed from an evolving country, which out of necessity had to advance the rights given to anyone who wasn’t an Anglo Saxon male for the survival of being a world power and a country.
In 1906 relations were with the Asian community were not on the best of terms according to (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 600) A San Francisco school board ordered the segregation of all Asian students in the district to go to a separate school. California had also considered limiting immigration of Japanese labors into the state. As those events compounded to make Japan feel disrespected, Roosevelt intervened on the school board issue stopping the segregation part only if Japan promised to stop the flow of labors to California. As if that wasn’t enough Roosevelt thought Japan might have been thinking America was weak so he had more than a dozen battle ships sail around the world and make a stop in Tokyo. This incident helped improve relations with Japan as they welcomed the fleet and sold them Japanese goods. This was short lived as California passed legislature, which prevented Japanese residents from owning any property in California. (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 601) Japan was looking for an Asian empire, which included American possessions in the pacific at the start of World War I. Labor was needed in California to help with agricultural needs and the railroad. Once those projects were wrapping up in California they felt they could start imposing tough segregation laws on the Asian immigrants and eventually stop them from coming to California. This was only when California was done with what they needed the Asian immigrants for.
World War I had some forward gains for female rights and troubling reminders of racial discrimination. (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 609) The Draft for World War I included both white and African American men. Four African American regiments were among the first sent into combat. Though, they fought as valiantly as the white men they weren’t allowed to march in the victory parades at home nor were they recognized in a French mural, which depicted the different races in the war. (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 6631) Floor shows at Happy Rhone’s nightclub brought in many white celebrities into an African American establishment. This act of whites over looking the fact of segregation to fulfill a need for good entertainment would be instrumental in African American rights. African Americans who went to college in 1920 was just 391, nine years later it was at 1903 who attended college. Another racial prejudice was reflected through American actions to ban German language classes in schools and change the name of sauerkraut to liberty cabbage. Although this was due to the war it wasn’t ethically right. Woman had finally won the right to vote in 1920. This new found freedom coupled with an increase in one percent from 1920 to 1930 wasn’t a major step but it did help. World War I did help woman in their cause to start working from home in the 1920’s but had not succeeded in fighting the wage wars that paid them a substantial amount lower than Men. The gains they made during World War I didn’t stay as postwar life slowed women’s newfound independence. According to (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 627) the divorce rate had doubled from 1900-1928. One could only suspect from woman starting to work and spend more time away from their homes and families. All these gain for woman just laid the foundation for what was to come.
The 1930’s brought about The Great Depression. (Divine et al 2011 Pg. 652-652) Many people became homeless during this time and would ride the major railroad routes depending on where they needed to go. If it were cold for instance they would head west. Regardless of race or gender, Americans in these groups would eat together sleep together or just offer each other support.