The Magnificent Constitution
Chapter 1 Introduction The Constitution is an important document because it is the highest law of our land and we still use it to this day. American freedoms are guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
The preamble (beginning) of the Constitution is very famous. It goes like this:
"We the people of United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
2. Federalism When the constitution was written, the Framers (people who wrote the constitution) wanted the nation and the states to work together called governing. It turned into federalism. Federalism is our system of government in which the power is divided between a central government and the states. The Constitution assigns certain powers to the national government. These powers are called delegated powers.The states, also have certain powers called reserved powers. Although each of the governments have certain powers, they also have to share some of them. Powers shared are called concurrent powers.
These are some of the powers that the national government have, some of the ones that the states have and some of the powers that both of the governments have to share.
3. Separation of Powers The Separation of Powers was when the government broke into three different parts. The executive, judicial and the legislative. They broke apart because the framers ( the people who wrote the constitution) didn't want any power to fall into a single group.
Each group has an important part. The executive branch enforces laws. The legislative branch is the congress, that means they make laws. The last is the judicial branch is made up of the Supreme Court.
The Separation had effected many people especially the group with a lot of power.
4. Checks and Balances All the branches over power each other so one doesn't get to powerful. Legislative branch is lead by the congress. The Executive branch is lead by the president. The judicial branch is lead by the Supreme Court.The legislative branch has power over the executive branch because they can enpeach or remove the President. The executive branch has power over the legislative branch because the President can veto bills. The legislative branch has power over the judicial branch because the Congress can reject nominees to the Supreme Court.
The judicial branch has power over the Legislative branch because the Supreme Court can declare a law unconstitutional. The executive branch has power over the Judicial because the President can get criminals from not going to jail. The judicial branch has power over the executive branch because the Supreme Court can declare a president's action to be unconstitutional.
All the branches have power over each other in all different ways.
5. Legislative Branch The legislative branch is made up of the Congress. They make all the laws. They tax all the people, and borrow their money. The legislative branch has two sides, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Chief Justice term is every two years.
They must be at least 25 years old to become the Chief Justice. Proportional representation depends on how populated each state is, and that tells you how much votes or seats each state gets.
The Congress controls all the people and all the money.
6. Executive Branch The executive branch does not have a lot of members. The president, Vice President and secretaries are members. The executive branch have very important jobs, they enforce laws, make key decisions and solve problems.
If the congress wants to make something a law the executive branch members have to agree to it first. If the members don't say anything back to the congress after ten days the the law, will go "dead". In conclusion, the executive branch is a big part of today's society.
The Executive Branch has few members, the top dog is the president.
7. The Judicial Branch The judicial branch is made up by the Supreme Court. There are nine justices in the Supreme Court. Each person in the Supreme Court has a job until they retire or when they die.
The Supreme Court can make laws legalized, because they have the final say in all laws. The Supreme Court trumps all the other courts. The judicial review is that they can declare laws unconstitutional.
The Supreme Court is the head court, and controls all the other courts.
8. Bill of Rights Writing the constitution, the states wanted to protect the people against the power of the national government. So they wrote ten amendments in order to create a bill of rights. The amendments were passed by the states for ratification and became law. The bill of rights protect citizens from government interference and all the issues related to the bill of rights are still being applied, tested and interpreted.
1. Freedoms, Petitions, Assemble 2. Right to bear arms 3. Quartering of soldiers 4. Search and arrest 5. Rights in criminal cases 6. Right to a fair trial 7. Rights in civil cases 8. Bail, fines, punishment 9. Rights retained by the People 10. States' rights
The first amendment of the bill of rights include the five freedoms. Freedom of religion, the right to have a religion and believe in anything you want. Freedom of speech and rights to state ideas. Freedom of press and right to publish your ideas. Freedom of assembly and right to meet peacefully in groups. Freedom to petition and the right to protest the government. Every single citizen in the United States have those five freedoms and no one can violate them.
9. Amendments The 13th amendment says that slavery should not be allowed. It was established on December 6th, 1865. It was a very important amendment. It gave the right to African Americans the right to go to war and fight for our country. There was a total of 16 African American soldiers that have gotten the Medal of Honor.
11. Lawsuits against states 12. Election of executive 13. Got rid of slavery 14. Civil rights 15. African American 16. Income tax 17. Direct Election of Senators 18. Prohibition 19. Women Suffrage 20. "Lame Duck" Sessions 21. Repeal of Prohibition 22. Limit on Presidential Terms 23. Voting in Districts of Columbia 24. Abolition of poll Taxes 25. Presidential Disability, Succession 26. 18-year-olds can vote 27. Congressional Pay
Ending slavery turned into war.
10. Student Rights Students have more rights outside the school than inside the school. Because the school is in charge of being a safe and peaceful place where everyone can learn. School is also in charge of protecting all of us when we are not with our parents. This means they make rules that might violate some of our freedoms being outside the school but they are rules that have to be followed inside the school.
For example, the principal of Hazelwood East High school edited two articles in the school paper that he thought were inappropriate.The students authors argued that this violated their freedom of speech but the Supreme Court disagreed and stated that administrators can edit materials that reflect school values. This happen because the students were inside the school and writing a school paper, so the principal has the responsibility and right to edit it and make sure that it's appropriate and respectful to readers.
We have more rights outside the school than inside it because being in the school we have to follow rules that are different from outside the school for our own safely.