The freedoms that have been afforded us today in America, including but not limited to freedom of speech, press, worship, etc. are commonplace in many other countries today. Countries that do not grant these freedoms to their citizens are considered barbaric or oppressive. However, it was a normal thing even 200 years ago that a country should have a central religion, or that reporters would be imprisoned or executed, even in third world countries. The United States started a trend that has influenced the world for the better.
Here in ‘Murica, we have freedom. We have flags and eagles and guns and cake and barbecues and you want to know why? I’ll tell you why. There was a group of people who were so brave that they did not care if they may never have British accents again or that they may lose their subscriptions to BBC. They knew in their starred and striped souls that the only way they could have true freedom was to stand up for what was right and not accept being bullied for tea, even if it is inferior to soda or hot chocolate. ‘MURICA SON! CAW CAW!
In his manuscript, Thomas Paine is examining an attack against the legitimacy of the French revolution. In the argument he is refuting, there are certain stories taken as evidence that suggest that the French revolution was violent and evil. By researching these claims, Paine finds that there are few witnesses to these actions, and several people who say that they didn’t happen. It is easy for him to dismantle his opponent’s argument at that point.
Rights of Man was a short document written by Thomas Paine in response to the American and French revolutions. Its purpose is to argue that men have a right to revolt against government if the government does not respect his inalienable rights. Interestingly enough, this is the exact reasoning in the Declaration of Independence.
The Constitution is a valuable document both for the purpose of history and for practicality. Not only is it the backbone of America’s law system, but it is a very patriotic document and is a symbol of American freedom. It is a brilliant system of government, and it is one of the longest lasting constitutions in the world.
The Constitution states that Presidents can assume powers that are not either explicitly given to another branch of government or denied the President. This has led to many issues and loopholes. For example, the United States right now has thousands of troops overseas, many in combat situations. Now, only Congress has the power to declare war. Why are these troops overseas then? Well, the Presidents have assumed the power to sent troops into small scale engagements that are not technically wars. This abuse of loopholes has had a major impact on the balance of power and the affairs of the American people.
The checks and balances implemented into our government to keep each branch (executive, legislative, and judicial) from reaching out of their spheres of influence and taking over the responsibilities and power of the other branches. For example, the President (executive) has the power to veto bills proposed by Congress (legislative). Congress has the power to override vetoes, and even the Supreme Court (judicial) has the power to rule laws made and passed by the other two branches as unconstitutional.
The Constitution of the United States is one of the most remarkable law documents in history. I find it amazing for several reasons. One reason is that the Constitution is one of the first of its kind to be created. Another is that the way that the Constitution is designed makes it like a framework or skeleton for laws. Instead of expressly defining laws like other documents, it instead sets up an initial skeleton that laws can be created upon and based on. It allows room for development and is therefore able to change with the times (which is why it has lasted and been applicable for so long.)
While it is a short document, the Declaration of Independence is one of if not the most influential items in American history. Not only was it the manifestation of America’s freedom from the British empire, it was a guiding force in the lawmaking and Constitution that would follow. Not only is it well thought out, but it is well written.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” One of the most iconic lines in the Declaration of Independence, this line has influenced the direction of American lawmaking both for better and for worse. It has been a guiding force in keeping lawmakers aware of the repercussions of laws upon people, as well as keeping laws that defy this statement in check. However, it has also been an influence on certain laws- I’ll use gay marriage as an example (I do realize that this is a… sensitive topic to some people, but it’s very applicable in my opinion.) While that does allow some people to pursue “happiness,” that “happiness” is certainly not God-given. The Bible explicitly states that God does not accept nor endorse homosexuality. So, while it may give some people a right to pursue what they think makes them happy, it is not endowed by our Creator.