The I think the blacks realized that their

            The
Populist Coalition was a time when Tom Watson, amongst others, desperately attempted
to unite black and southern white minor farmers for the shared goal of trying
to break the Democrat’s dictatorial power in the South. The black population took
their own path and formed their own organization called the Colored Farmers’
Alliance. The Populists resulted in the awakening of thousands of women
fighting for their rights. The Populist Coalition was meant to be a time where
the common people fought together but concluded with more divisions in the
social classes.

            Even
when the whites finally wanted to unite with the blacks, the black population turned
them down. I think this time period represents the empowerment of the black population
because they are standing on their own feet fighting for their own rights without
anyone’s help. However, I also believe the black population’s actions lead to
more segregation and social inequality. By them refusing to join the white Populists
and making their own organizations, such as the Colored Farmers’ Alliance and The National Association of Colored Women
of 1896, they formally declared they will not stand with the other races and I think
this adds to the social separation in the nation. I think by establishing their
own communities, schools, organizations, and other facilities, they have
created a world just for themselves. They isolated themselves and their seclusion
backfired as shown in this chapter, their freedom kept regressing, all the
support and the Reconstruction’s establishments towards the blacks were falling
apart.

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As
Mary Elizabeth Lease, one of the first female lawyers, said, “we wiped out
slavery and… began a system of white wage slavery worse than the first slavery”
(Foner, 655). I think the blacks realized that their lives were slowly being
dominated by white Americans and that the only real freedom they had was to
fight for their rights. To them, this period of time is worse than when they
were slaves because now they have tasted the freedom and were brought back to a
different type of slavery, but at the same time, it empowered them to rely on
themselves. This ties in with this chapter because this new sense of
responsibility and need to regain their rights is the major reason why they
kept on fighting. The nation limited so many of their freedoms and they were
regressing; they were not only seen as second-class citizens but as servants. They
also had social ‘responsibilities,’ such as only being allowed to speak in a certain
manner when whites were around, having to move out of the whites’ way in the
street, not allowed to try on clothes in stores, etc. (Foner, p66). The only
liberty they truly had was the freedom to fight for the future generations’
rights and equality.