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What did the Founding Fathers think about Constitutional Government?

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Presentation on theme: "What did the Founding Fathers think about Constitutional Government?"— Presentation transcript:

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2 What did the Founding Fathers think about Constitutional Government?

3  The Student will be able to...  Describe the diverse features of the early American colonies and state and their populations  Explain what the Founders learned about government from history and their firsthand experiences with government  Describe the forms of constitutional governments  Evaluate, take and defend positions on the sources that should be consulted if a new constitution for the United Sates were being written today  Defend: Are the Founders’ concerns about abuse of government power still valid today?

4  Size  The colonies were bigger than England & Scotland  More than 1,000 miles from north to south of colonies  Diverse Background  Puritans to Quakers  Economic Reasons (poor to rich)  Different Languages (English, Dutch, French, Germany)  Social/Political Cultures  Huge estates to family farms (slavery in every colony)  Mostly Rural/Trade people

5  Greece and Rome  Aristotle, Cicero  Those who govern must be wise  Government should help people learn about and perform their civic and moral duties  Democracies begin well, but usually end in tyranny  Hobbes and Locke  Hobbes – “State of Nature”  Live in conflict/violent. Choose to set up a state to create order out of chaos  Locke – “Social Contract”  Government should protect “life, liberty and estate”  100 Years of self-government  Local self-government existed with a remote authority

6 1. Government should be the servant, not the master, of the people 2. A fundamental higher law, or CONSTITUTION should limit government

7  Every “ STATE ” must perform 3 functions:  1. Deliberate about what is to be done and decide what public policy should be  Legislative Function: Deliberating on and Enacting Law  2. Perform an executive function  Carry out Public Policy  3. Carry Out a Judicial Function  Interpretation of law are managed and applied to every day life

8 Rule ofRight FormCorrupt Form ONE MonarchyTyranny FEW AristocracyOligarchy MANY Polity (mixed constitution) Democracy (when poor take over from the ruling group)

9  Polybius: A mix of the types of government  Rule of One; Rule of a Few; Rule of the Many  England  The Monarchy  Parliament  House of Lords  House of Commons  The Colonies  The Monarchy  Elected Representatives

10  A plan that sets forth the structure and powers of government  The power of each instrument of government  How the constitution can be changed  Most constitutions are written out  Only 3 current democracies DO NOT have a single written out format of their government  England, Israel and New Zealand  Limited Government  Restraints on governmental powers

11  The Founding Fathers saw the Constitution as “Higher Law”  1. It sets forth the basic rights of citizens  2. It establishes the responsibility of the government to protect those rights  3. It establishes limitations on how those in government may use their power with regard to citizens’ rights and responsibilities, the distribution of resources, and the control or management of conflict  4. It can be changed only with the consent of the citizens and according to established and well-known procedures

12  Get in your STUDY GROUPS  Discuss and answer the “Reviewing and Using the Lesson” questions on page 10  Each group must be ready to present the answer to a specific question, citing the book, to the class

13  Group One: Tanner, Ari, Mikel, Keziah  Group Two: Jacob, Patricia, Joseph, Ryan  Group Three: Brittney, Nadia, Nick, Rene  Group Four: Danielle, Drew, Jordan, Michael  Group Five: Kyle, Montoya, Katrina, Emma  Group Six: Garrett, Quinn, Scott, Nathan

14  Group One: Mariah, Meghan, Catherine  Group Two: Bridgett, Ashley, Rosamaria  Group Three: Joel, Adam, David  Group Four: Kori, Brett, Jeffrey  Group Five: Alex, Matt, Taylor, Mercedes  Group Six: Amanda, Alexis, Kristi

15  Identify at least three characteristics of the British colonies  What important lessons did the founding generation learn from political theory and political history?  What is the difference between “LIMITED” and “UNLIMITED” government? Do you think the difference is important? Why or Why Not?  What is a “CONSTITUTION?”  What is a mixed constitution? Explain the advantages and disadvantages of this type of government?  Why is a constitution considered a higher law, and what are the major characteristics of a higher law?  According to Aristotle, what are the differences between right and corrupt forms of government?


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