Colonial America – a Land of Oppression


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Colonial America was represented as the land of opportunity in which people they were able to have a fresh start and create a better life for themselves. Colonial America provided resources for settlers such as gold, work, and land and provided a chance for people to escape from religious persecution. Colonial America portrayed themselves as a foundation which provides a “new” life for incoming settlers. However, even though they depicted themselves as a land of opportunity they were in fact, a land of oppression. Colonial America did not give the people their full rights that they deserve in which they were treated unfairly and cruel.

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The Spanish Colonization source helps me answer my statement and provides evidence in which Colonial America was a land of oppression. Christopher Columbus’ main priority, when traveling to Hispaniola, was to find gold, take over the land, and convert the natives to Christians. Achieving these goals weren’t difficult to accomplish because the natives weren’t educated and did not have any certain beliefs or no religion to believe in, therefore, they were easily manipulated. Thus, making it much simpler for Columbus to convert them to Christians. In addition to this, the natives lack the sufficient needs of economic resources so they looked up to Columbus to lead them. They should be good servants and intelligent, for I observed that they quickly took in what was said to them, and I believe they would easily be Amadeus Christians, as it appeared to me that they had no religion.”

Columbus would either take the natives to Castile or hold them as captives on the same island and do as they are told. Therefore, the natives had no opportunity and were held under captivity. The Anne Hutchinson source helps justify my statement and provides evidence to support my thinking of Colonial America. Anne Hutchinson believed that there shouldn’t be any ministers or government officials when their own beliefs should only be between that certain individual and God. Due to her religious beliefs, she was placed on trial before a civil court and challenged the civil authorities of Massachusetts Bay. Hutchinson did not have the right to revolt against the men in power and challenge their authority. The authorities consisted of men only and women were not significant, therefore there was no opportunity for women to use their voice to change beliefs. Hutchinson proved otherwise, she expressed her opinion and was able to hold a strong argument in which the authorities didn’t approve of her rebellious actions and banished her from Boston.

The last primary source I used to help justify my answer was the Olaudah Equiano source. This source provided evidence that supported my thinking due to the narrative story Equiano told. His tragic story shows that he had no opportunity to live his life because he was kidnapped and sold as a slave at such a young age. His childhood was taken away and went through a horrific experience as a child, he was separated from his sister and had to go through the slave ship which affected him tremendously. The stench was unbearable and began to lose his appetite, when he didn’t want to eat, two men flogged him.

Equiano had a fearful experience but still managed to survive. Is it not enough that we are torn from our country and friends to toilet from your luxury and lust of gain? This quote shows that people had to go through terrible experiences for the benefit of others. A land of opportunity should give the people their full rights so they have the ability to create a better future. Instead, Colonial America took away those rights to benefit their own needs. The three primary sources proved that Colonial America was a land of oppression due to the lack of freedom and speech both religiously and physically. Even though they portrayed themselves as a land of opportunity they provided the opposite of what the people desired and continued to suffer.

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