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Origins Of American Government
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  • 1. Analyze the origins of American government by guided note-taking via PowerPoint
  • 2.
    • English colonists brought with them ideas about government
    • Their ideas included trail by jury, limited government, representative government
    • Limited government first appeared in the Magna Carta in 1215, it provided protection against loss of property, life, liberty
    • In 1628 the Petition of Right limited the king’s ability to collect taxes, imprison people without cause or house troops in private homes
  • 3.
    • The English Bill of Rights stated that:
    • 1. Monarchs do not have a divine right to rule. They rule be consent of the people
    • 2. Monarchs must have Parliament’s consent to suspend laws, collect taxes, or maintain an army
    • 3. The monarch cannot interfere with elections or debates
    • 4. The people have the right to petition the government; to have a fair and speedy trial by a jury of peers
    • 5. To be free from cruel and unusual punishment
  • 4.
    • John Locke an English philosopher deeply influenced the American colonists
    • Franklin, Jefferson, and Madison regarded his ideas as political truth
    • Locke believed all people were born free, equal, and independent
    • That people possessed natural rights to life, liberty, and property before government
  • 5.
    • People contracted among themselves to form government to protect their natural rights
    • Locke argued that if a government failed to protect these rights, the people could change that government
  • 6.
    • After the defeat of the French during the French and Indian War, the British began to impose taxes on the colonies
    • This caused Colonial resentment to grow and protests spread
    • By 1760’s harsh new British policies spurred an American sense of community
    • On April 19, 1775 British and American forces clashed at Lexington, the war had begun
  • 7.
    • The purpose was to justify the Revolution and put forth the founding principals of the new nation
    • It consisted of three parts 1. a statement of purpose 2. 27 paragraphs listing specific complaints against the king 3. a concluding statement of the colonist’s determination to separate
  • 8.
    • Under this plan there was a unicameral Congress with no executive branch or judicial branch
    • Weaknesses of the Articles
      • No power to levy taxes
      • No power to regulate trade
      • No single currency
      • Could not enforce its own laws
      • After Shay’s Rebellion calls for reform began to be heard for a stronger national government
  • 9.
    • At first the founding fathers met to reform the Articles of Confederation however, they quickly decided to form a new government
    • Key agreements included the idea of limited government , separation of powers, national government should coin money only
    • Key disagreement over representation
    • Great Compromise- In the senate each state gets two reps per state
    • In the House of Representatives reps would be based on population
  • 10.
    • Three-Fifths Compromise- dealt with how to count slaves for representatives
    • It was decided that 3/5 of the enslaved people were to be counted for both taxes and representation in each state
  • 11.
    • Federalists verses Anti-Federalists
    • Federalists believed in a strong central government
    • Anti-Federalists believed in a weak central government and also want a Bill of Rights included to safe guard peoples rights
    • After the Federalist promised to include a Bill of Rights it was quickly ratified
    • In 1791 James Madison introduced the first ten Amendments which were added and became the Bill of Rights