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Law Unit Introduction and Overview
Today’s Agenda • Today in History • Law Unit • Influences on the Constitution • English Laws • Native American Governments • Historical Documents • The Great Awakening • Enlightenment • Locke v. Hobbes
Today in History October 21, 2010 • 1797: The U.S. Navy frigate Constitution, also known as Old Ironsides, was launched in Boston Harbor. • 1805: A British fleet commanded by Adm. Horatio Nelson defeated a French and Spanish fleet in the Battle of Trafalgar; Nelson, however, was killed. • 1879: Thomas Edison invented a workable electric light at his laboratory in Menlo Park, N.J. • 1917: American soldiers first saw action in World War I on the front lines in France. Birthdays Alfred Bernhard Nobel (1833 – 1896) Dizzy Gillespie (1917 – 1993) Whitey Ford (1928 - ) Willis McGahee (1981 - )
Influences on the U.S. Constitution • Native American governments • Reaction to English Laws • Historical Documents • The Enlightenment • The Great Awakening
Influences on the U.S. Constitution • Native American Governments • Iroquois Confederacy • Five nations (six in 1722) • Each Tribe sent a chief to Confederacy meetings • Discussed issues that impacted entire Confederacy • Confederacy would vote on the issues and tribes would follow decision • Reaction to English Laws
Historical Documents • Many historical documents have influenced the Constitution • Magna Carta • English Bill of Rights • Fundamental Orders of Connecticut • Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom • Declaration of Independence • Articles of Confederation
The Great Awakening • The Great Awakening: a Christian movement that became widespread in the American colonies in the 1730s and 1740s • Sermons about spiritual equality led colonists to demand more political equality
The Enlightenment • The Age of Reason • (1650 – 1800) • Use of scientific thought to answer questions dealing with the unknown • Discovery of natural laws which led to political, scientific, and philosophical thought
The Enlightenment • The Enlightenment: a philosophical movement of the 18th Century • Voltaire • Wrote about the defense of civil liberties, religious freedom and free trade • Montesquieu: The Spirit of the Laws • Separation of powers in government • Rousseau: The Social Contract • The role of government is to protect the rights of citizens • Locke: Two Treatises on Government • People have the Natural Rights of Life, Liberty, and the Ownership of Property
Locke and Hobbes Comparison • Locke and Hobbes are two Enlightenment philosophers with very different points of view
Locke vs. Hobbes • Locke • Major work • Two Treatises of Government • Social Contract • Give up minor rights to maintain the rights to life, liberty, and protection of property • Rights • People have natural rights • Role of the state • To ensure justice • Hobbes • Major work • Leviathan • Social Contract • Do as you are told and you will live • Rights • You give up your rights to the government in exchange for your life • Role of the state • Society is a creation of the state and reflects the will of the ruler Click on the picture of Locke to access the website with the information to complete the rest of the chart
The Enlightenment and the Social Contract John Locke (1632 – 1704): English philosopher • The Social Contract: • An agreement that exists between the rulers and people that they rule • Three parts of Locke’s Social Contract • One side of the contract is the government’s duty to protect the unalienable rights of the people • Locke believed the rule of law was more important than the authority of any individual • If a ruler breaks the Social Contract or has lost the approval of the people – they should be replaced Not that John Locke John Locke (1632-1704)
The Social Contract:Tiered Assignment The Declaration of Independence • Listen to the reading of the Declaration of Independence • Read the article from The World Book Online Reference Center • Complete the assigned work for your group
The New Social Contract • Move your seat and sit in groups according to the letter that was on your card • Use the information you gained from your first group to complete the new assignment • Take turns being the group expert and sharing answers • ONLY the Super Answer must be written in complete sentences • Enjoy!
FormingOur Government • The Articles of Confederation • The Constitution of the United States Use the textbook (pages 189-199) to complete the worksheet about the Articles of Confederation.
Q: What is one example of how each state constitution formed a limited government? A: In a limited government all leaders have to obey the law and no one has unlimited power. For example, many states placed their courts outside of the governor’s control. The Articles of Confederation • Q: Give 2 examples of what the Confederation Congress could do and what it could not do. • A: The Confederation Congress could: borrow money and make coins, negotiate and make treaties with other countries and Native Americans, and settle conflicts between states, and ASK states for money. Congress could not force states to provide money or troops, even in an emergency.
The Need for a Strong Central Government Use pages 194-199 to answer the following questions. • Q: What 3 major problems led to the decision that the United States needed a more powerful central government? Give one example of each problem. • A: The 3 major problems were: A lack of respect from other nations: British refuse to leave forts in America, trouble with trade: British close ports in the West Indies, and economic problems at home: new government has not power to tax and cannot raise money. • Q: What was the ‘last straw’ for the Articles of Confederation? A: Shays’ Rebellion was the last straw.
Influences on the Constitution: The 13 Colonies from Articles of Confederation to a Centralized Government
Shays’ Rebellion • Inflation and loss of trade with Great Britain led to huge state debts • Massachusetts tried to pay off its debts by imposing heavy taxes on land • Policy was very rough on farmers • When farmers could not pay the courts forced them to sell their property, some farmers had to serve time in debtors prison • The rebellion was led by Daniel Shays, a poor farmer from Western Massachusetts • Attacked courthouses in Western Mass in September of 1786. With the courthouses closed no one’s property would be taken • State troops defeated the rebels in January of 1787, by February many had surrendered or were arrested • 14 leaders were sentenced to death, most including Shays were set free • The rebellion revealed the weakness of the Articles of Confederation and the need for a stronger central government