“In which John Green teaches you about the United States Constitution. During and after the American Revolutionary War, the government of the new country operated under the Articles of Confederation. While these Articles got the young nation through its war with England, they weren’t of much use when it came to running a country. So, the founding fathers decided try their hand at nation-building, and they created the Constitution of the United States, which you may remember as the one that says We The People at the top. John will tell you how the convention came together, some of the compromises that had to be made to pass this thing, and why it’s very lucky that the framers installed a somewhat reasonable process for making changes to the thing. You’ll learn about Shays’ Rebellion, the Federalist Papers, the elite vs rabble dynamic of the houses of congress, and start to find out just what an anti-federalist is.”
From Crash Course
If you want to know why the United States is a Federal Republic and you’re now an adult, well you missed that opportunity in high school during your social studies class. Perhaps you were too busy texting your classmate who sat right next to you to bother to take and learn social studies. If you’re currently in high school or about to enter high school, I’ll explain why we have a Federal Republic and very limited government. At least compared with the social democracies, theocratic and military dictatorships around the world.
If you think Uncle Sam is too greedy and paternalistic and takes too much of your money and personal decision-making away from you, join the club. You might have to join a waiting list and have a better chance of winning multiple state lotteries on the same day than being able to join this club anytime soon, because it has somewhere around 200 hundred-million members, not including the Socialists who complain everyday about not being taxed enough and going crazy about all the personal and economic decisions that they have to make every day, As well as the Christian-Theocrats and Christian-Nationalists in America who complain that America is too decentralized and because of that states and localities get to make decisions everyday that violates their religious and moral values.
But if you think Uncle Sam is too greedy and too fat, I’ll introduce to King George from the United Kingdom of Britain. Who was so fat because of all the money he took from the American Colonies that he would make Paris Hilton look like a foodaholic today. To be completely serious for a moment and perhaps even multiple moments: the reason why America is a Federal Republic, is because the men who would become our Founding Fathers Englishmen who escaped mainland Britain to come to what would become America later on, were tired of London telling them what to do and taking most of their money from them. Two-hundred and forty-one years later Britain is till a unitarian government where most of the governmental power in a country of almost sixty-five million people resides in London.
Our Founding Fathers (our Founding Liberals, actually) wanted to break away from that unitarianism form of government. And create a country where the power would be decentralized. Where yes, there would be a Federal Government primarily responsible for national security, foreign policy, interstate law enforcement, interstate commerce, interstate transportation. But where the states could take care of the issues and make policies that affect their people in their states. Where localities could do the same thing. Where you wouldn’t have Washington with some Federal Superintendent of Education, telling Milwaukee, Boston, and other cities how to educate their kids. How to police their streets, how to regulate their local business’s , and other examples.
In a huge vast country of three-hundred and twenty-million people (get your brain wrapped around that number for a moment) a Federal Republic and federalism are the only way you could be able to keep a country this huge and diverse, with all of our racial, ethnic, cultural, and political diversity, together. Otherwise California, Florida, Texas, New York, perhaps all the states in New England together, would break away from Washington and form their own independent countries. Because Uncle Sam can’t mind his own damn business and is too greedy and paternalistic telling states and localities in many cases thousands of miles away, six-thousand or so in the case of Hawaii. We have a Federal Republic and are not a unitarian social democracy, or a religious theocracy, in order to keep the country together. And come together when it’s in our national interest.