Ideals of Democracy


Explain how democratic ideals are reflected in the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

The U.S. government is based on ideas of limited government, including natural rights, popular sovereignty, republicanism, and social contract. The Declaration of Independence, drafted by Jefferson with help from Adams and Franklin, provides a foundation for popular sovereignty, while the U.S. Constitution drafted at the Philadelphia Convention and led by George Washington, with important contributions from Madison, Hamilton, and members of the “Grand Committee,” provides the blueprint for a unique form of political democracy in the U.S

The protection of Civil Liberties and Rights in the USA today

The principles of the US Constitution - their effectiveness today

The American Revolution was a revolution of elites and property owners. Revolutions such as the 1789 French Revolution, the 1917 Russian Revolution, and the 1978–1979 Iranian Revolution produced great societal change—as well as plenty of bloodshed. The American Revolution was different. Despite the revolutionary ideas behind it, the Revolution was essentially a conservative movement that did not drastically alter the colonists’ way of life. Its primary goal was to restore rights that the colonists felt were theirs as British subjects and to enable them to live as they had before Britain tightened its regulations following the Seven Years’ War. American colonists did not feel the need for great social, economic, or political upheavals. Despite their opposition to British rule, they “were not oppressed people; they had no crushing imperial shackles to throw off .” (Gordon S Wood) As a result, the Revolution did not create class conflicts that would split society for generations to come.