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American Government Unit One:


American Government Unit One: Foundations of American Government GPS Standards SSCG1 The student will demonstrate knowledge of the political philosophies that shaped ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: American Government Unit One:

American GovernmentUnit One
  • Foundations of American Government

GPS Standards
  • SSCG1 The student will demonstrate knowledge
    of the political philosophies that shaped the
    development of United States constitutional
  • 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
  • Analyze the writings of Hobbes (Leviathan), Locke
    (Second Treatise on Government), and Montesquieu
    (The Spirit of Laws) as they affect our concept
    of government.

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.

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

Chapter 14
  • Citizenship

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?

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.

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

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.

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
  • Refugee flees a country to another to escape

European Immigrants- 1800s
  • Immigrants in the 1800s came from Europe.

Latin American Immigrants Today
  • Most Immigrans today come from Asia and Latin

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.

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

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.

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

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

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.

3) Answers will vary.
2) Answers will vary.
1) by the law of the soil
Chapter 1
  • People and Government

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

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.

Four Characteristics of a State
  • Population
  • Territory
  • Sovereignty
  • Government

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

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 isworst 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.

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
  • 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.

John Locke
  • John Locke (1632-1704) 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.

  • 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

Purpose of Government
  • Maintain social order
  • Provide services
  • Protect people
  • Help control the nations economy.

Governments Systems
  1. A unitary system gives all key powers to the
    national or central government.
  2. 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.
  3. A federal system of government divides the powers
    of government between the national and state

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

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.

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.

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.

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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.

The Roots of Democracy
  • Conditions that favor the democratic system of
  • Citizens participate in civic life.
  • Stable, growing economy with a large middle
  • 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.

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.

1) representative democracy
2) oligarchy
3) No, some monarchies are democracies where the
monarchs powers are limited.
Three major economic types
  • Capitalism-
  • Socialism-
  • Communism-

  • 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.

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

  • 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

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

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

  • Criticisms of socialism
  • Stifles individual initiative.
  • Over taxes people.
  • Can give rise to dictatorships.

  • 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.

  • 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).

  • 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.

1) capitalism with a mixed-market economy
2) socialism and communism
3) capitalism
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Origins of American Government
  • Chapter 2

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 monarchs power and
    represented the will of the people.

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

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

Petition of Right
  • 1628
  • King Charles I, and monarchs to follow, could
  • Collect taxes without consent of Parliament.
  • Imprison people without just cause.
  • House troops in private homes.
  • Declare martial law.

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

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

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
  • Separation of powers

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

Why did things change?
  • French and Indian War 1754-1763, 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.

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.

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
  • Stamp Act Congress first meeting organized by
    the colonies to protest the kings actions. They
    sent the Declaration of Rights and Grievances,
    which stated, no taxation with out

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.

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 peoples homes.

Colonial Unity
  • Harsh British policies and taxes helped unite the
  • 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.

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.

  • 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.

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

Interpreting Political Cartoons Activity
  • 1. What symbol represents the colonies in this
    1779 political cartoon?

The bucking horse represents the colonies.
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 persons
    signature as a John Hancock.

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.

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.

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

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.

Weaknesses of the Articles (cont.)
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
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.

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.

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

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