The Bill of Rights

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The Bill of Rights During the Revolutionary War the rebelling colonies needed to find a way to govern the new nation and created the Articles of Confederation. The Articles of Confederation created a weak federal government with most of the power given to the states. The weak federal government was unable to address a number of primarily economic and diplomatic problems facing the nation. A Federalist movement started in order to create a stronger federal government that could better handle these problems. In 1787 delegates were called into Philadelphia to write a constitution with more power granted to the federal government. There was a small but significant opposition to the idea of a federal constitution. Those who were opposed to a strong federal government were called Antifederalists. Antifederalists were worried that the powers granted to the federal government under the constitution would be abused and citizens could be treated as they were under British rule. In 1789 Antifederalists insisted “that the state constitutions, and citizens needed explicit protection from possible excesses by the federal government” (Divine, Breen, Williams, Gross, Brands 150). Antifederalists thought the Constitution put too much power in the hands of the federal government. In almost every state convention, the Antifederalist “pointed out the need for greater protection of individual liberties, rights that people presumably had possessed in a state of nature… A bill of rights, therefore, ought to set forth the purposes for which the compact is made, and serves to secure the minority against the usurpation and tyranny of the majority” (152). The Bill of Rights was intended to protect rights of citizens from federal government. The first ten... ... middle of paper ... ...e free and equal for all. Works Cited Divine, Robert A., T.H. Breen, R. Hal Williams, Ariela J. Gross, H.W. Brands, America: Past and Present, Vol. 1, 10th ed. Upper Saddle River: Pearson, 2012. Print “About the First Amendment,” 2014. First Amendment Center. The First Amendment Center Publication. http://www.firstamendmentcenter.org/about-the-first-amendment. Web. 23 Mar 2014. “House passes the 13th Amendment.” 2014. The History Channel website. 23 Mar 2014. http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/house-passes-the-13th-amendment. Web. 23 Mar 2014. “Sons and Daughters of Liberty.” U.S. History Online Textbook. 2014. http://www.ushistory.org/ us/10b.asp. Web. 25 Mar 2014. “Women Serving in the 113th Congress 2013-15.” 2014. Center for American Women and Politics. http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/fast_facts/levels_of_office/Congress-Current.php. Web. 25 Mar 2014.

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