“On British company the right to sell tea

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            “On Colonial American soil, in 1620, the Pilgrims of the
Massachusetts Bay Colony established a community government based on an
agreement called the Mayflower Compact. They set up their own government, even
though King James I of England had not given them the authority to govern
themselves. The Mayflower Compact provided for framing “such just and equal
lawes, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices,” as the Pilgrims thought
“most meete and convenient for the general good of the Colony.”i “Throughout the 1600s, as
other groups of settlers arrived in America they, too, devised charters or
compacts that set up local governments. Such charters included the Fundamental
Orders of Connecticut (1639), and the Articles of Confederation of the United
Colonies of New England (1643-1684).”ii “Early American colonists
were subjects of the British Crown, and they were often dissatisfied with
English law. For example, the colonist strongly objected to the Stamp Act of
1765, which taxed all newspapers and legal papers in the colonies. After the
law was passed, angry colonists took action by asking for delegates to attend a
Stamp Act Congress in New York. Nine colonies sent delegates. At the Stamp Act
Congress, delegates denounced what they called “taxation without representation.”iii “In 1773, the British
government again angered Americans by giving a British company the right to
sell tea directly to the Colonies. This undercut the American merchants who had
been selling British tea on the Colonies.in an act of defiance, colonists
dressed as Native Americans boarded a British ship in Boston harbor and dumped
crates of tea overboard. The British government punished the colonists by
briefly closing Boston ports. This only made the colonists more determined to
fight the King’s rule.”iv

            “Shortly after the Boston Tea Party, Great Britain’s
Parliament passed a law levying a taw on tea. In response, colonists convened
the First Continental Congress (also called the national Congress) in
Philadelphia. To protest the British Tea Act of 1774, delegates from the
thirteen colonies passed resolutions calling for a boycott, a ban against
British trade.”v
“When the national Congress met again in June 1776, a resolution was introduced
that the “United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent
States.” A committee was appointed to “prepare a declaration to the effect of
the said first resolution.” The result was the Declaration of Independence,
which was adopted on July 4, 1776.”vi “The American Revolution
ended in 1781 with the defeat of the British by the American volunteer arm.
Independence brought new problems. The Articles of Confederation, passed by the
national Congress that same year, showed the states’ reluctance to give up
power to a national government. The Articles created one legislative body,
called Congress. Each state had one vote in Congress. Only the states could
regulate commerce, levy taxes, maintain an army, or print money. Consequently,
Congress had no authority to levy taxes to pay off the $42 million debt from
the American revolution. Under the Articles, the United States was simply a
loose-knit group of bickering and competing states. Important legislation
seldom passed, since it took agreement by nine states to pass laws.”vii

“The
First Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the government from limiting
certain important freedoms of individual expression. It allows people to
worship freely, to speak and write freely, to meat together peaceably, and to
complain to an about the government.”viii “The First Amendment
prevents the government from arresting anyone who criticizes the government in
speech or in print. Before the American Revolution, a catch-all charge called
seditious libel was used by the British government to punish colonists who dares
to speak out against the government. Like many other rules imposed by the
Crown, colonists considered seditious libel laws unjust. Finally, without
taking up arms, the colonists rebelled. In a 1734 landmark court case, a jury
made up of American colonists ignored British law they found the accused, John
Peter Zenger, not guilty of four courts of seditious libel. Zenger, a printer
in New York, was arrested for printing material critical of the territorial
governor, who had been appointed by the king. British laws against seditious
libel said that the government had only to prove the Zenger printed the
material. Zenger admitted that he had. According to British law, Zenger was
clearly guilty as charged. In court, the colonial jury ignored the law, and found
Zenger not guilty. Zenger was the last colonist to be charged with seditious
libel. This case established a basis for freedom of the press in America,
before the American revolution, and before the Declaration of Independence, the
Constitution, and the Bill of Rights were written. The First Amendment also
keeps “church and state” separate. Many settlers who came to America had
suffered under foreign governments that forced them either to follow a
particular religion or to pay a fine. The First Amendment was written to
prevent the government from establishing a state religion that all citizens
must support. It also prohibits the government from using public tax dollars to
favor one religion over another.”ix

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“All
legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United
States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” x “The House of
Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second year by the
people of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the
Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Brach of the State
legislature. No person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to
the age of twenty-five years, and been seven years a citizen of the United
States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that state in
which he shall be chosen.”xi “The Executive power
shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold
his office during the Term of four years, and, together with the Vice
President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows.”xii “The Judicial Power of
the Untied States, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior
Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges,
both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good
Behaviour, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Service, a
Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in office.”xiii  “The Judicial Power shall extend to all cases,
in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United
States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority; -to
all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls; -to all
Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction; – to Controversies to which the
United States shall be a Party;-to Controversies between two or more States; –
between a State and Citizens of another State; -between Citizens of different
States, -between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of
different States, and between a State or the Citizens thereof, and foreign
States, Citizens or Subjects.”xiv

“Full
faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public Acts, Records, and
judicial Proceedings of every other State. And the Congress may be general Laws
prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be
proved, and the Effect thereof.”xv “The citizens of each
State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the
Several States. A person charged in any State with Treason, Felony, or other
Crime, who shall flee from Justice, and be on found in another State, shall on
Demand of the executive Authority of the State from which he fled, be delivered
up, to be removed to the State having Jurisdiction of the Crime.”xvi “The Congress shall have
power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the
Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this
Constitution shall be so constructed as to Prejudice and Claims of the United
States, or of any particular State.”xvii

 

 

 

 

 

 

Works
Cited

i
Judson, K, 2013, The United States Constitution:
Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 40, Ibid., pp. 21-22

ii
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 41

iii
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 42

iv
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 42

v
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 43

vi
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 46

vii
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 47

viii
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pg. 138

ix
Judson, K, 2013, The United States
Constitution: Its History Bill of Rights, and Amendments, pgs. 139-14

x
Article 1 of Constitution of the United
States, section 1

xi
Article 1 of Constitution of the United
States, section 2

xii
Article 2 of Constitution of the United
States, section 1

xiii
Article 3 of Constitution of the United
States, section 1

xiv
Article 3 of Constitution of the United
States, section 2

xv
Article 4 of Constitution of the United
States, section 1

xvi
Article 4 of Constitution of the United
States, section 2

xvii
Article 4 of Constitution of the United
States, section 3

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