Описание презентации по отдельным слайдам:
Teacher Misevra I.E. Vysokoye Secondary School. 2016.
The foundation of the United States-the Constitution-was started in 1787.It is two years older than the French Revolution. Made by farmers, its substance is still untouched. For 215 years the Constitution has been the undisputed basis of a world power consisting of a quarter billion people. In 1848, when the revolution in Germany failed, the American democracy was already older than our present one. Since 1789, a president has been elected every four years. There have been great and outstanding men in the top position, but there have also been incompetent ones. However, at no time, could a dictator, a felon or a war-monger seize power. Never in 200 years! Out first try at democracy failed after 13 years. The “civilized”, “grown-up” Germans had all in one-war-monger, dictator and felon. How clearly thought-out, how stabile, how safe the American system of checks and balances and the segregation of powers has been. 200 years later and it is still undamaged- even with one or two “weak” presidents. Constitution can be seen in the National Archives in Washington and millions of Americans have been there to see it.
The thirteen colonies became thirteen states after the war and were only connected by the Congress. The single states disagreed on many points, but they all wanted a central government. In 1778 the Articles of Confederation were produced. This concept established a League of Friendship among the states, but not a political union. The states remained separate and sovereign. A one chamber congress built the central government. Each state had a single vote, but Congress had only few powers and could even not impose taxes. There was no president and central court. As a result a lot of national problems could not be solved, for example, the repayment of debts raised from the American Revolution or the War of Independence. A depression followed and the threat of further rebellions spurred the states to call a convention to revise the Articles of Confederation.
Beginning in the 16th century, settlers came to North America and founded colonies. All of them had the hope to find a better life in the “New World”. The hard and uncertain conditions in the “New World” could not stop them from leaving their home country. They saw possibilities to achieve their goals, like living in religious freedom, getting their own small part of land or political liberty. These settlers started to build villages in the unknown wilderness. Often they fought against the Native Americans. More and more there was a manpower shortage. The farmland was cheap and the labour rare and expensive. As a result, many poor Europeans, who longed for a better life, got a free crossing over the ocean. In return these people had to work on farms until they had paid back their debts. Then they became free and often could create an existence with some starting capital like cash money or a small farm. The population grew fast as more and more people followed. A huge number of workers came from Africa. As of 1790, there were more Negroes than whites living in the colonies.
If only a few a few decades thirteen English colonies were created in North America. Each of them was independent and each of them had its own laws. The biggest differences were in connection to religion. In Massachusetts, for example, the laws of the church were enforced. Only members of the puritanical church had the right to vote. The state and the church were one and the same. But in other colonies religion did not play a huge role. Christians and Jews, and among others, lived next to each other and the government did not influence this. At the end of the 18th century about 4 million people from nearly all countries in Europe lived in the colonies: English, German, Irish, French, Scottish, Swiss, Italian. America brought then all together, but how and why? They all had the same aims, worries and illusions.
The Constitutional Convention began on May 25,1787, in Philadelphia's Independence Hall. All of the nations most prominent men turned up- George Washington, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and Benjamin Franklin. In general 55 of the 74 delegates attended. They agreed in most issues, but four questions became difficult to resolve. A. How are people represented in Congress? One key question of representation in Congress resulted finally in a compromise. Two ideas were debated: -The members of both houses of Congress are allocated according to the population of each state, and all states are given equal representation in a one-chamber Congress regardless of population. In the end, the delegates decided to let the states have it boths ways. In the upper house, the Senate, the states got an equal voice and in the lower house, the House of Representatives, representation was apportioned by population. This agreement became knowm as the “Great Compromise”.
B. What to do about slavery? The Great Compromise led to another problem. If the number of representatives depends on the population, should slaves also belong to the nation? Southern states would have an advantage because of their large slave number. Even though the words “slaves” and “slavery” do not appear in the Constitution, there is a clause in Article I that counted slaves as only three-fifths of a person. C. What does the powers of the president and the procedures for election look like? The role of the president also became interesting, because the delegates wanted to avoid a monarchy, but tried to elect a single person with power. The final shape emerged: ”A single leader, elected to a four-year term and eligible for re-election, with authority to veto bills enacted by Congress. The president was also given command of the military and the rower to appoint federal officials, subjected to confirmation by the Senate”
D. What are the powers and functions of the federal court? The delegates agreed to create a single Supreme Court to veto laws by both Congress and state legislatures, in addition Congress was permitted to elect lower federal courts.
The Constitution is also called the “Supreme Law” in the United States because neither a law nor the government is allowed to contradict it and everyone is a part of this “first law”. When the Constitution was written, nine states needed to sign before it was in force. But first there were only eight states: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland and South Dakota. One state was missing. Finally, New Hampshire showed the readiness to join. So the Constitution was able to become the future system of the United States. Before it was published in 1789, Virginia, New York, North Dakota and Rhode Island also followed.
In general the Constitution consists of two parts: The first part contains the original model of the Constitution, exactly how it was written. This part is also called the “Document”. The reasons for the creation and the main principles of the constitution are mentioned in this part. Part two is the dynamic part. Here are all the amendments which were added or supplemented. This offers the Constitution the opportunity to adapt to the changing times and the given facts. Since 1789, there have been 27 amendments. The first ten are better known as the “Bill of Rights”. This bill is a declaration guaranteeing fundamental rights of the U.S. citizens.
The Constitution is based on three principles. a) The rights that every American, also every one living in America, has. This first right was taken from the first sentences of the Declaration of Independence. There is also the Right of Life, of Freedom, and of Pursuing Happiness. The right of Religious Freedom, the Protection of Self, including the Right to Own and Carry a Gun, the Right of Speak Freely and the Right to a Fair Trial were derived later.
b) Democracy. The nation is the administrator. Each person has the right to vote and the possibility to run fir election. This is a dynamic part. The Constitution adapts to new situations. With the choice of a representative, you can influence this adaption, so each individual indirectly has an influence on the Constitution. c) Segregation of Powers. The Constitution divides the government into three branches, each separate and distinct from another.
1)There is an Executive Branch. It consists of the president and his/her cabinet (13 heads of department/secretaries of state). The president is elected every 4 years and his/her presidency is limited to 2 terms. The prerequisites to become a candidate for president are: -you have to be born an American citizen -you have to have lived in the U.S. for at least 14 years -you have to be over 35 years of age The president has to manage many jobs, he/she is chief executive (budget, laws, federal policies, appoints federal officials) ,commander in chief (army, U.S. defence department), legislative leader (representative of the U.S.), foreign policy director (international activities) and leader of the nation (ceremonial duties, show American pride, awards).
2) The Legislative Branch consist of the Houses of Representatives (lower house) and the Senate. In the House of Representatatives, there are 435 members (according to the number of states and proportionate of the population). The minimum age to serve is25 years and there is a new election every 2 years. All bills dealing with taxes must begin here. The Senate consists of 100 members (2 from each state). Here, the minimum age is 30 and there is a six-year-term. The Senate introduces the bills and makes an approval for nominations for the president. As an executive ability, members of the Senate can sit in court to hear the case presented by the lower house. 3) The Judiciary branch is represented by the Supreme Court. It is the highest court of appeal. Nine judges are appointed by the President for a lifetime.
The American Constitution has a system of checks and balances. The power given to each is delicately balanced by the power of the other two, and each branch serves as a cheek against potential excesses by the others. The government is not able to unilaterally enact laws. The parliament should only enact laws which correspond to the Constitution. The courts are independent. 4) A republican form of government, federalism, exists in every State, and the admission of new states as well as the government of territories is provided. There is an article which deals with the relations of the states. Fill faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public arts, records and judiciary proceedings of every other state. Discrimination against citizens of other states is prohibited.
For the first time in history, a constitution was based on human rights. It was the first modern state whose government was a democracy. (All male inhabitants had the right to vote.) There was no “king with God‘s mercy”. Lincoln once said: “The United States has something new under the sun, a system of government of the people, by the people, fir the people.” The Americans have always been proud of their United States. In fact, the Americans Constitution became a model for a lot of other great constitutions, like the French and German ones. The American Constitution is quite fascinating as it seem that no improvement is possible. But this is only a façade. In Actual fact, people have to work on it year after year to adapt it to modern history and times. Since times are changing, and correspondingly the Constitution will always need to be updated, the perfect Constitution will never most likely exist…
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