position paper

efore you begin this assignment, please go through your Chapter 2 lecture in the Modules on you Home page and read chapter 2.

Read the article in the following link, PBS Native American influence on foundations of American Government (Links to an external site.)and answer the 2 discussion questions below in short paragraphs of about 250 words each. Remember to demonstrate your knowledge of the reading and overall course material.

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https://www.pbs.org/native-america/blogs/native-voices/how-the-iroquois-great-law-of-peace-shaped-us-democracy/?fbclid=IwAR3X3MhA6GmdOW884IEaCI5EEbgFPWwMkUbp3iGXSlxm-e4a0fipGagOMe0

Discussion Questions:

1. What governing principles incorporated into the Constitution were influenced by the Iroquois Confederacy?

2. The Iroquois Council Meeting, which lead to the League of Nations and ultimately to the Iroquois Confederation Constitution, was similar to which gathering of colonial leaders and why?

Instructions:

Your paper should demonstrate your knowledge of the material and your critical thinking skills. With each position paper due, you will be required to comment on two other students’ position papers. Your comments should be respectful, intelligent assessments that can promote discussion about the topic.

CH 02 OUTLINE
The First Founding: Ideals, Interests, and Conflicts

The American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution were outgrowths and expressions of a struggle among economic and political forces within the colonies.
In an effort to alleviate financial problems, including considerable debt, the British government sought to raise revenue by taxing its North American colonies. This energized New England merchants and southern planters, who then organized colonial resistance.
Colonial resistance set in motion a cycle of provocation and reaction that resulted in the First Continental Congress and, eventually, the Declaration of Independence.
The Declaration of Independence was an attempt to identify and articulate a history and set of principles that might help to forge national unity.
The colonies established the Articles of Confederation. The first goal of the Articles was to limit the powers of the central government. Under the Articles, the central government was based entirely in Congress, yet Congress had little power. The relationship between the national government and the states was called a confederation, which is a system of government in which states retain sovereign authority except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government.
The Failure of the Articles of Confederation Made the “Second Founding” Necessary

Concern over America’s precarious position in the international community, coupled with domestic concern that “radical forces” had too much influence in Congress and in state governments, led to the Annapolis Convention in 1786. Delegates from only five states attended, so nothing substantive could be accomplished.
Shays’s Rebellion in Massachusetts provided critics of the Articles of Confederation with the evidence they needed to push for constitutional revision.
Recognizing fundamental flaws in the Articles, the delegates to the Philadelphia Convention abandoned the plan to revise the Articles and committed themselves to a second founding—a second, and ultimately successful, attempt to create a legitimate and effective national system of government.
Conflict between large and small states over the issue of representation in Congress led to the Great Compromise, which created a bicameral legislature based on two different principles of representation.
The Three-Fifths Compromise addressed the question of slavery by apportioning the seats in the House of Representatives according to a population in which five slaves would count as three persons.
The Constitution Created Both Bold Powers and Sharp Limits on Power

The new government was to be strong enough to promote commerce and protect property, prevent the threat posed by “excessive democracy,” provide for direct popular election of representatives, and protect citizens’ liberties and property rights.
To encourage popular consent for the Constitution, the House of Representatives was designed to be directly responsible to the people, whereas the Senate was designed to guard against the potential for excessive democracy in the House.
The Constitution grants Congress important and influential powers, but any power not specifically enumerated in its text is reserved specifically to the states.
The framers hoped to create a presidency with energy—a president who would be capable of timely and decisive action to deal with public issues and problems.
The establishment of the Supreme Court reflected the framers’ preoccupations with nationalizing governmental power and checking radical democratic impulses while guarding against potential interference with liberty and property from the new national government itself.
Various provisions in the Constitution addressed the framers’ concern with national unity and power. Such provisions included clauses promoting reciprocity among the states.
Procedures for amending the Constitution are provided in Article V. These procedures are so difficult that amendments are quite rare in American history.
To guard against possible misuse of power by the national government, the framers incorporated into the Constitution the principles of the separation of powers and federalism, as well as a Bill of Rights.
The separation of powers was based on Montesquieu’s theory that power must be used to balance power.
Although the framers’ move to federalism was a step toward greater centralization of national government power, they retained state power by devising a system of two sovereigns—the states and the central government.
The Bill of Rights was adopted in 1791 as the first 10 amendments to the Constitution.
Ratification of the Constitution Was Difficult

The struggle for ratification was carried out in 13 separate campaigns—one in each state.
The Federalists supported the Constitution and a stronger national government. The Antifederalists, on the other hand, preferred a more decentralized system of government and fought against ratification.
The Federalists and the Antifederalists had differing views regarding issues such as representation, the prevention of tyranny, and government power.
Antifederalist criticisms helped to shape the Constitution and the national government, but it was the Federalist vision of America that triumphed.
Constitutional Amendments Dramatically Changed the Relationship between Citizens and the Government

Citizens play an indirect but important role in changing and interpreting the Constitution.
Provisions for amending the Constitution, incorporated into Article V, have proved to be difficult criteria to meet. Relatively few amendments have been made to the Constitution.
Most of the amendments to the Constitution deal with the structure or composition of the government.
As the Supreme Court reviews cases, it interprets the meaning of the Constitution and its amendments.
The Constitution and Your Future

The Constitution’s framers placed individual liberty ahead of all other political values. But by emphasizing liberty, the framers virtually guaranteed that democracy and equality would evolve in the United States.
Through a series of amendments to the constitution, the right to vote has expanded significantly. Only white men who owned property were allowed to vote in the early years of the republic; today virtually all persons over the age of 18 can vote.
Lecture video: https://youtu.be/bO7FQsCcbD8

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