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American Government Unit One:

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1 American Government Unit One:
Foundations of American Government

2 GPS Standards SSCG1 The student will demonstrate knowledge of the political philosophies that shaped the development of United States constitutional government. Analyze key ideas of limited government and the rule of law as seen in the Magna Carta, the Petition of Rights, and the English Bill of Rights. Analyze the writings of Hobbes (Leviathan), Locke (Second Treatise on Government), and Montesquieu (The Spirit of Laws) as they affect our concept of government.

3 GPS Standards SSCG2 The student will analyze the natural rights philosophy and the nature of government expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Compare and contrast the Declaration of Independence and the Social Contract Theory. Evaluate the Declaration of Independence as a persuasive argument.

4 GPS Standards SSCG19 The student will compare and contrast governments that are unitary, confederal, and federal; unitary, oligarchic, and democratic; and presidential and parliamentary. SSCG20 The student will describe the tools used to carry out United States foreign policy (diplomacy; economic, military, and humanitarian aid; treaties; sanctions; and military intervention).

5 Chapter 14 Citizenship

6 What is a Citizen? The Greek Philosopher Aristotle, one of the first students of government, defined a citizen as someone who participates in politics. What does that mean?

7 What is a Citizen? Citizenship was first defined in the 14th Amendment to the Constitution following the Civil War in 1868. It states that all people born and naturalized in the United States. US citizens are also citizens of the States in which they live.

8 What is a Citizen? Citizens are members of a political society.
Naturalization- the legal process by which a person is granted the rights and privileges of a citizen.

9 What is a Citizen? Jus Soli- “Law of the Soil.” Nearly all persons born in the US or a US territory are citizens of the United States. Jus Sanguinis- “Law of the Blood.” If you are born of American parents, then you are an American citizen.

10 What is an Immigrant? Immigrants are referred to as aliens.
Resident alien - person from a foreign nation who has permanent legal residence in the US. Nonresident alien -here temporarily. Illegal alien In the US without passport, visa, or entry permit. Aliens can legally become citizens through naturalization. Refugee – flees a country to another to escape persecution.

11 European Immigrants- 1800’s
Immigrants in the 1800’s came from Europe.

12 Latin American Immigrants Today
Most Immigrans today come from Asia and Latin America.

13 What are the rights of an Immigrant?
The protections and rights in the Constitution are guaranteed not only to US citizens, but to aliens as well. Aliens are required to pay taxes but are not allowed to vote. They are also exempt from military service and jury duty. Aliens are not permitted to travel freely throughout the country without notifying the government.

14 How do immigrants become citizens?
There are 5 steps in the naturalization process: Enter the US legally. Be of good moral character. Declare support of principles of America. Read, write, and speak English. Basic knowledge of American history and government.

15 How do immigrants become citizens?
Applicants must be 18 years old. Lived in the US as a legally 5 years, 3 if married to a citizen. Lived in the state the petition is filled in for 3 months.

16 How can you lose US citizenship?
Expatriation - when one becomes a citizen of a foreign nation and gives up American citizenship. Citizenship taken away as punishment for treason, rebellion, or attempting to over throw the government.

17 How can you lose US citizenship?
Denaturalization - when an immigrant loses citizenship if found to have been fraudulent or deceitful during the naturalization process.

18 What are the responsibilities of a citizen?
Know and respect the laws and your rights. Participate in politics and society, most commonly by voting. Can also be done by petitioning the government. Good citizens should stay informed about community, state, and national concerns.

19 3) Answers will vary. 2) Answers will vary. 1) by the “law of the soil”

20 Chapter 1 People and Government

21 What is a Government? State - political community that occupies a definite territory and has an organized government that can make and enforce laws without approval of a higher authority. Nation - a sizeable group of people united by common race, language, customs, traditions, and/or religion. Nation is often mistakenly used to describe a state.

22 What is a government? Not all states are nations:
Quebec, Canada: Follows French culture and language and Catholic religion. Most of Canada is English and Protestant. Not all nations are states: Many African tribes are divided among many different separate political states. When the territory of a nation and state coincide, you have a nation-state.

23 Four Characteristics of a State
Population Territory Sovereignty Government

24 Theories of the origin of the state.
Evolution Theory: The state evolved from the family group. Force Theory: One person or a group used force to establish its authority to govern. Divine Right Theory: The rulers were chosen by the gods to govern. Social Contract Theory: The people gave the government its power to rule, in return the government had to protect and respect the people’s rights.

25 Thomas Hobbes Thomas Hobbes in the 1600s wrote a book called the Leviathan, in which he described the world without government, “In such condition there is…worst of all, continual fear and danger of violent death; and the life of man (is) solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short…” People create a government by entering into a social contract. Hobbes developed the theory of the social contract in Leviathan.

26 Jean-Jacques Rousseau
In 1762, Jean-Jacques Rousseau published a book called The Social Contract, in which he stated that people gain and lose certain things when entering into the social contract, “What man loses through the social contract is his natural liberty and an unlimited right to everything that tempts him and that he can acquire. What he gains is civil liberty and the proprietary [exclusive] ownership of all he possesses.” Without government, a person can own anything he can take by force. With government, a person owns anything that they possess – whether or not they have the force to keep it.

27 John Locke John Locke ( ) believed that the contract creates a limited government that relies entirely on the consent of the governed. The people, and only the people, give it the authority to govern. Natural Rights - The rights that people are born with. Locke wrote about these rights in his Second Treatises on Government, where he listed the natural rights as the rights to life, liberty, and property. The people have the right to abolish that government and form a new one. Influenced founders, especially Thomas Jefferson, writer of the Declaration of Independence.

28 Montesquieu Charles Montesquieu – Developed the theory of separation of powers in his book, Spirit of Laws Divided power among three branches– Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches

29 Purpose of Government Maintain social order Provide services
Protect people Help control the nation’s economy.

30 Governments Systems A unitary system gives all key powers to the national or central government. A confederacy is a loose union of independent states that come together to form a common goal. Our first form of government was a confederacy – it failed to unite the states so that they could work together. A federal system of government divides the powers of government between the national and state governments.

31 Constitutions and Government
A constitution is a plan that provides the rules and structure for government. Constitutions set out the goals and purposes of government. Constitutions provide the supreme law for states and their governments.

32 Goals of the U.S. Constitution
The Preamble lists the goals of our Constitution. They are… To form a more perfect union Establish justice Ensure domestic tranquility Provide for the common defense Promote the general welfare Secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.

33 Politics and Government
Politics is the effort to control or influence the policies and actions of government. Special interest groups seek special benefits towards a specific goal. The Constitution is designed to promote the general welfare.

34 Major Types of Government
In an autocracy power and authority reside in a single individual. In an oligarchy, such as a communist country, a small group holds power. In a democracy the people hold the power.



37 Characteristics of Democracy
Equal opportunity. Majority rule minority rights respected. Free and open elections in which every vote has equal weight. Candidates for office respect the voters’ decisions and act as loyal opposition.

38 The Roots of Democracy Conditions that favor the democratic system of government. Citizens participate in civic life. Stable, growing economy with a large middle class. A public school system open to all. A strong civil society in with a network of voluntary organizations. The people accept values such as liberty and equality for all.

39 Representative Democracy
The US has a Representative Democracy. The people elect representatives that run the country. In a Direct Democracy every citizen votes on every issue.

40 1) representative democracy
2) oligarchy 3) No, some monarchies are democracies where the monarch’s powers are limited.

41 Three major economic types
Capitalism- Socialism- Communism-

42 Capitalism Capitalism runs off the free market, producers and consumers make economic decisions. Adam Smith created Capitalism in his book The Wealth of Nations. Laissez-faire economics, when the government does not get involved. Competition would be the “invisible hand” that guides the economy.

43 Capitalism The US is a mixed-market economy, in which free enterprise is combined with government restrictions (minimum wage, child labor laws).

44 Socialism The government owns the basic means of production, distributes profits and wages, and provides social services. In 19th century industrialized Europe working class people were severely underpaid and mistreated causing them to revolt against capitalism.

45 Socialism Democratic-socialism, people have basic human rights and some control over government officials through free elections.

46 Socialism- 3 main goals Distribution of wealth equally.
Government control of all major economic decisions. Government ownership of means of production.

47 Socialism Criticisms of socialism: Stifles individual initiative.
Over taxes people. Can give rise to dictatorships.

48 Communism Karl Marx - The Communist Manifesto.
There were two groups, the wealthy capitalists called the bourgeoisie, and the workers called the proletariat. The bourgeoisie used its power to keep the proletariat as a working class.

49 Communism The workers would overthrow the capitalists.
Resulted in elimination of classes and government ownership of all means of production. Pure communism; there would be no need for government, property held in common (everybody would just share everything).

50 Communism Command economy, decisions are made at the upper levels of government and handed down. All communist states have failed to progress to no government. Inadequate standards of living caused them to loosen their control or face revolt.

51 1) capitalism with a mixed-market economy
2) socialism and communism 3) capitalism


53 Origins of American Government
Chapter 2

54 An English Political Heritage
English colonists brought with them a heritage of freedom and principles of government that helped shape the development of the United States. Most important to the colonists was to have a government which limited the monarch’s power and represented the will of the people.

55 Three documents that limited the power of the King
Magna Carta Petition of Right English Bill of Rights

56 Magna Carta AKA the Great Charter
1215 – signed by King John of England Limited Government – the king did not have all the power Established the rule of law, meaning that everyone had to follow the law. Protect life, liberty and property

57 Petition of Right 1628 King Charles I, and monarchs to follow, could not: Collect taxes without consent of Parliament. Imprison people without just cause. House troops in private homes. Declare martial law.

58 English Bill of Rights 1688 Monarchs rule with the consent of the people Parliament must agree to suspend laws, levy taxes, or maintain an army Monarch cannot interfere in Parliament elections Right to petition the government Fair and speedy trials No cruel or unusual punishment

59 Representative Government
Followed the model of Parliament, which was a bicameral, or two chamber, legislature: House of Lords House of Commons

60 Principles of Colonial Government
What are three key practices found in the colonial governments? Written constitution -Ex. Mayflower Compact – 1st written constitution in America. Legislature of elected representatives - Ex. VA House of Burgesses – first legislative body. Separation of powers

61 In a nutshell… The American colonies were founded by the British
The colonies were a source of raw materials and a market for British goods Britain was 3000 miles away Colonial government handled most business with some guidance from Parliament and the king. The colonists did not have representation in Parliament

62 Why did things change? French and Indian War , allowed the British to solidify control over the continent. King George III came to power in 1760 with a different idea of how to rule the colonies.

63 Colonies on their own… Although Britain had been allowing the colonies limited self-government. The British government tightened its control over the colonies after the French and Indian wars. King George III and his ministers made the colonies help pay for the war by levying new taxes on the colonists.

64 Taxes and Colonial Response
Stamp Act – The first direct tax on the colonists. It required a stamp tax on legal documents, pamphlets, newspapers, dice and playing cards. To pay for the French and Indian war. Stamp Act Congress – first meeting organized by the colonies to protest the king’s actions. They sent the Declaration of Rights and Grievances, which stated, “no taxation with out representation.”

65 Taxes and Colonial Response
The colonists protested and boycotted until the Stamp Act was repealed. Committees of Correspondence – Groups that formed so that information about British actions could be more easily spread throughout the colonies. The Townshend Acts – taxed many products that were needed daily, including tea.

66 Taxes and Colonial Response
The tax on tea and further British control resulted in the Boston Tea Party. The British responded to the tea party with punishments and tightening of control of Boston. Intolerable Acts – a set of acts passed after the Boston Tea Party that was designed to punish the people of Boston. They closed the harbor, placed Massachusetts under martial law, and allowed British troops to be quartered in people’s homes.

67 Colonial Unity Harsh British policies and taxes helped unite the colonies. To protest British policies, the colonists sent petitions to the king. The First Continental Congress held in Philadelphia in 1774 debated what the colonies should do about their relationship with Britain. They imposed and embargo and said that if Britain used force, so would they.

68 First Shots Fired April 19, 1775 – Battle of Lexington and Concord. First shots and beginning of the American Revolutionary War. The Second Continental Congress met in 1775, it organized a military and appointed George Washington as commander. Served as acting government throughout the war.

69 Independence Thomas Paine - Common Sense Strengthened the independence movement. Said King George III was a tyrant and the colonies were destined to be free. The Declaration of Independence in 1776, which set forth the principles for the new nation.

70 Independence (cont.) The Declaration had three parts:
statement of purpose, describing basic human rights; list of specific complaints against King George III; statement of determination to separate from Great Britain.

71 1. What symbol represents the colonies in this 1779 political cartoon?
Interpreting Political Cartoons Activity 1. What symbol represents the colonies in this 1779 political cartoon? The bucking horse represents the colonies.

72 The Signing John Hancock of Massachusetts, the president of the Continental Congress, was the first person to sign the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. When he did, he wrote his name in very large letters, declaring, “There, I guess King George will be able to read that!” Even today, Americans often refer to a person’s signature as a “John Hancock.”

73 Independence! Now what? We all know that the United States achieved independence from Great Britain after the American Revolution, but winning a war was not the only concern. Colonists also had to come up with a new form of government.

74 Articles of Confederation
First attempt at a unified government of all 13 former colonies. Proposed in 1777. Ratified by all 13 independent states by 1781.

75 Key Features of the Articles
Weak national government One branch of government – Legislative Unicameral One vote per state – all were equal.

76 Weaknesses of the Articles
The Congress had to depend on the states for money and had no power to tax, regulate trade, or enforce laws. Amending the Articles required the approval of all the states. No president or executive branch. No system of national courts; state courts enforced and interpreted national laws.

77 Weaknesses of the Articles (cont.)

78 1) They could borrow or request money from states.
3) They could wage war and make treaties and alliances with other nations 2) Weak, they gave little power to government

79 Discussion Question Why did the writers of the Articles of Confederation make the plan so weak? Their experience with a king made delegates afraid to give any one individual or branch too much power.

80 Important achievements…
The Confederation government ….. established policy for developing western land – Northwest Ordinance. signed peace treaty with England. set up departments establishing the precedent for cabinet departments.

81 The Need for Stronger Government
Soon after the war, disputes broke out among the states; the government’s debt left soldiers unpaid. An economic depression in 1786 led to Shays’s Rebellion, an armed uprising by Massachusetts farmers who could not pay their debts. They decided to call a constitutional convention in Philadelphia

82 Discussion Question How did Shays’s Rebellion suggest the need for a stronger government? The rebellion alarmed people who feared mob violence and the Confederation government’s inability to do anything about it.

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