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HIS 211 - U.S. History: Reconstruction to the Present - Textbook

Assignment: Perspectives on the Great Depression and the New Deal

After reading the previous primary source readings (FDR’s fireside chat Greater Security for the Average Man and Hoover’s speech on liberty), answer the following in a paragraph:

  1. Why did FDR see raising taxes and increasing welfare spending as an increase of freedom, and why did Hoover see it as restricting freedom?

Be sure to cite specific passages and quotations from each document in support of your answer.

NOTE: Be prepared to discuss the following in class, based on the documents above:

  1. Is it ever possible for one person to gain something without someone else having to lose something? Can you think of a true win-win scenario? This is an important point, because back then, as today, people clamor for this or that, claiming that it will “increase freedom” or “guarantee rights,” but will it do so for everyone? If it won’t can you claim that a particular program or policy is truly expanding freedom and protecting rights? When is it acceptable to decrease one person’s freedom in order to increase another’s?


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