During the period from the 1900s till the 2000s, the reform movements appeared in America that led to significant changes in the national political, social, as well as economic establishments. Grass-root organizations’ attempts to alter the United States showed their willingness to take effective actions and their belief that living conditions could be made better through the development and enforcement of governmental acts. The analysis of the US history shows that the actions of grass-root organizations had a significant influence on the enactment of such programs as The Federal Reserve Act of 1913, The Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, as well as The Equal Rights Amendment of 1972 which helped to improve the living conditions of common US citizens between 1900 and 2000.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, the state of the US economy required the implementation of effective steps that could stabilize the economic situation in the country. To tackle this problem, President Woodrow Wilson decided to adopt a tariff reform to ensure effective competition through the enactment of The Federal Reserve Act in 1913. The document not only served as the most significant part of Wilson’s domestic legislative program but also assisted in avoiding economic catastrophe. The Federal Reserve Act established a national banking system that included twelve regional banks, which despite being privately controlled, were regulated by a specially formed committee called the Federal Reserve Board. The legislation provided America with the opportunity to create efficient banking, stable currency system, as well as provided a high level of government control over the national economy. As a result, the new rules made the US monetary system “more elastic and credit adequate for the needs of business and agriculture. The Act provided the newly developed reserve banks with the money emission function with the aim of ensuring economic stability in the United States. Such changes enabled the American government to increase the level of employment and, at the same time, decrease the rate of inflation. Thus, the provision helped the nation to create a safer, more flexible and more stable financial and monetary system than it had been previously.
Despite the fact that, at the beginning of the twentieth century, the economic stability and prosperity of America significantly progressed, the issue of poverty continued to raise concerns of the US common population. To achieve a full social and economic potential, the United Stated had to lower the poverty rate in the country. As a result, Lyndon Johnson developed and adopted The Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 that served as a starting point in the war on poverty. Meanwhile, in 1965, the Congress doubled the funding of the program, implemented new economic measures aimed at addressing the problems of depressed territories, as well as allocated over 1$ million to improve the living conditions in slums. The governmental assistance presupposed the development of a new food stamp program, the provision of the poor with a choice in obtaining food, and even renting supplements, which served as alternatives to public housing. The number of households, which received assistance, accounted for more than three million or nearly 90% of those in need by 1972. The statistics shows that more and more people benefited from The Economic Opportunity Act. This legislature required the poor to take an active part in poverty program planning by visiting neighborhood centers, the purpose of which was to help the government to train a new generation of community leaders and activists. One should emphasize the fact that the philosophy behind the provision was not wealth distribution, but the idea that the US government should provide the poor with equal opportunities that might help them earn a decent salary and support their households in a proper way.
The provision of equal rights to all citizens including women of the United States was the central issue that the grass-root organizations fought for in the twentieth century. A significant achievement was the adoption of The Equal Rights Amendment of 1972 that guaranteed equal rights for females, which was the primary aim of the women's rights movement. The amendment proposed a way to provide females with equal legal status to men in the country. Although the parties of the government “took an explicitly antifeminist tone” by opposing the provision and abortion rights, the amendment represented a major step in the move towards the equality of women’s rights. The enactment of the legislation was also important because it showed how many conflicts America faced in the 1970s regarding social issues. As a result, The Equal Rights Amendment served as significant evidence that women could obtain equal rights and choices as men did. The act also showed that females were tired of being identified by their sexual roles and wanted to achieve equality in all fields, especially the professional one.
Taking into consideration the analysis of the American history, one may conclude that the actions of grass-root organizations played as significant role in the history of the United States, as their actions fostered the development and enactment of programs that provided equality to all citizens as well as offered opportunities to improve living conditions. Such provisions as The Federal Reserve Act, The Economic Opportunity Act, and The Equal Rights Amendment aimed at stabilizing the state of economy of the country, helping the poor as well as providing women with equal rights.