The constitution of the United States borrows more or less equally from the examples of Athenian democracy and the Roman Republic. Both of these governmental systems claimed to vest power in “the people,” yet each of them also placed significant restrictions on participation in government.
Which of these two systems would you consider to be closer to the modern interpretation of democracy? In your answer, be sure to consider which groups were enfranchised (allowed participation) and which ones were disenfranchised (denied participation) in government.
In your responses to classmates, discuss the motivations each of these governmental systems had in excluding some people from participation. Ask your peers what they think the motivations were.
After reading Articles I, II, and III of the U.S. Constitution, in what ways might you argue that the Constitution was written to form a weak or strong central government? Provide three specific examples to support your position.
- Identify specific examples in the language of the text to support your position.
- Examine some of the arguments used by the framers of the Constitution while debating the language of the document.
- Include any philosophical underpinning that might have influenced the thinking of the framers of the Constitution.
- length 1-2 pages
The powers enumerated in the U.S. Constitution for each branch of government have shifted over the years as a result of decisions made by the Supreme Court. Using the U.S. Constitution, library, Internet, or any other available materials, list and discuss three ways to achieve greater balance of power among the three branches of the federal governmen
Please note that the U.S. Constitution brings a philosophical perspective that has helped to shape our jurisprudence that should not be lost as a result of casual reading of the Constitution.