A Limited and Lasting Government

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From their beginnings, people have organized themselves into groups within a larger system, each with his own responsibilities, for the greater good. Not everyone could be a hunter. If there were no one who knew how to prepare the food, the group would die. These early organized systems developed rules and consequences for not abiding by them. Hammurabi’s Code was one of the earliest records of rules/laws and consequences and the first time that offenders knew what their punishment would be before they faced it. The Greeks and Romans contributed the idea of a separation of power. The first self-organized or semi-democratic government in America came in the form of the Mayflower Compact in 1620. The compact restricted those who had a voice in government and required allegiance to the King of England, but there were some elements of the Mayflower compact that would be carried over by the founding fathers in the creation of our American Government. All of these ideas would be drawn upon to become the premise for the founding fathers of the United States to create a limited and lasting government: A government that is “of the people, by the people and for the people”.

In 1754, Benjamin Franklin called for a union of the colonies under the Albany Plan but was not successful. The earliest form of independent government in America came as a result of the Articles of Confederation in 1781 which established a single chamber national congress in which each state was represented by one vote. The Articles of Confederation unified the colonies for the Revolutionary War against the British and taxation without representation. They also established states rights. The Articles greatest strength was that it protected against a large an...

... middle of paper ... responsible for making laws.

Though the Constitution of the founding fathers has been amended over time, to meet the needs of the citizens of the United States, the overarching principles of a separation of powers and a system of checks and balances are the fundamental concepts that drove the founding fathers to break ties with their British ancestors and strive for a better way. These concepts are the cornerstone of our country and have endured with little change for over two hundred and twenty five years. They are the basis of our limited government which is “of the people, by the people and for the people”.

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