Foundations of Democracy, the Magna Carta, Mayflower, Paine's Common Sense Civics

how do we refer to our two for two

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hi and welcome back to mr. Raymond

civics EEOC Academy today we're gonna

continue learning about the ideas and

the influences that America was founded

on I call this foundations of American

government and remember a foundation is

typically the ground level that we build

upon so today we're gonna be looking at

documents that America was built upon

and like the last video we're gonna be

looking at the time period before 1776

when the United States was established

or kind of created and when we declared

our independence from Great Britain more

specifically we're gonna be looking at

the influences that the founding fathers

look to when they created the US

government and here we see those

documents in our benchmark which is to

trace the impact that the Magna Carta

English Bill of Rights Mayflower Compact

and Thomas Paine's Common Sense had on

the colonists views of government now I

like to look at these chronologically

and I would recommend writing these down

in a timeline at some point

so our first document is very famous one

and that is the Magna Carta written all

the way back in 1215 ad in England the

Magna Carta was a document or contract

really that was signed by the king by

King John of England King John was an

unpopular King amongst the nobility and

the nobility at this time were called

the Barons the Barons were families that

helped the king kind of rule the country

at the time all the land in Great

Britain was divided amongst

the noble families and these families

provided protection for the vast

majority of the people who were for the

most part peasants the Barons though

also provided the king with soldiers to

protect England from foreign invaders

like the Vikings or France and the

Barons were upset with the king because

he was placing too many taxes on them

and they were upset that they were

losing their money to the king because

you know even back then it was all about

the Benjamins baby

so in 1215 they gathered their armies to

face off against the king

so the king was forced to sign this

document which guaranteed the following

first and foremost it would limit his


here we see limited executive authority

and the king is the executive the Magna

Carta included protection of private

property like their lands and their

money and next it guaranteed them trial

by jury and this was important because

no longer would it be the Kings decision

if there was a dispute arguments or

trials between the king and between the

nobles would be decided by their fellow

Nobles now this was still at a time

where rights were really only for the

nobility and the Magna Carta also also

stated that from now on taxes could only

be established by the Barons consent and

ultimately this would lead to what was

known as Parliament in fact it's still

known as Parliament so let's look at

these a little closer the way this

document described a jury was

quote-unquote the lawful judgment of his


and this is the definition that we still

use today to describe a jury your peers

are people who are kind of just like you

and because they are just like you they

would naturally have some understanding

for your situation okay we don't want

the government deciding if we're guilty

or innocent because they are the ones

who are charged you or have charged you

with a crime or with doing something

wrong so we want our peers deciding and

we are definitely going to be coming

back to this throughout the year because

juries are an important part of the

system that we live in now let's look at

how this led to Parliament and

Parliament is the body in England that

passes laws and taxes and now with the

Magna Carta in addition to the Barons it

wasn't just the Barons it was the church

who was extremely powerful back then the

two would also be involved in advising

the king as to taxes and laws and these

advisers would slowly evolved into this

body of lawmakers known as Parliament

now Parliament is very much like our

legislative body which we call Congress

and you're gonna be learning a lot about

Congress this year so just keep in mind

that this is the beginning of not just

the king holding power but the king kind

of sharing power with others now again

the establishment of these advisers

would be especially important in

deciding taxes as the document says they

would they could be taxes could not be

passed without consent now this was

going to be a huge issue for the

founding fathers and the colonists in

America because this is exactly what the

British started doing to them

and we're gonna look at that in detail

next video hopefully you've heard the

famous phrase no taxation without

representation well this goes all the

way back to the Magna Carta all right so

let's review our Magna Carta highlights

you better write these down these are

our big bullets maybe make a flashcard

and memorize them first and foremost

memorize the date okay because your test

question is probably going to give you

an excerpt or a section from the Magna

Carta and they won't tell you what

document it is but they will give you

the date and knowing the date will help

you pick out which document you're

talking about okay um again big point of

this is that it limited the government's

power okay this is what it would lead to

in our government but back then it was

limiting the government was the king

okay the king was in charge

no taxing without consent is a huge deal

especially the impact it had on the

colonists and finally trial by jury okay

this was the first we saw jury trial

since all the way back in ancient Greece

and finally it led to Parliament so if

you have a question on your EOC about

the Magna Carta those are your answers

okay if you know your answers ahead of

time you're gonna get the question

correct okay so our next document is the

Mayflower Compact and this was written

in 1620 now hopefully you've heard the

heard of the Mayflower before okay

because this was the boat that was used

by the pilgrims to come to America

now when the pilgrims arrived near Cape

Cod Massachusetts they knew they were

going to be creating a society from

scratch and the pilgrims or Puritans by

the way they were not the only ones on

the boat so

before they all got off the boat they

thought hmm we better come up with some

rules about how we're gonna live and

govern ourselves so they came up with

this document and by the way a compact

is like a contract or a formal agreement

so they wrote down quote-unquote we the

undersigned agreed to combine ourselves

into a civil body politic I kept their

spelling because spelling back then was

just crazy so these basically

established the principle which your

test is gonna refer to as

self-government in which the people in

America would rule themselves now it

would take some time to get there but

they would no longer be happy with being

ruled by rich families or nobilities or

kings and this is a big step towards

what would eventually become democracy

which we're gonna be talking about a lot

now New England by the way it still has

a tradition of self-government they have

what are known as town meetings and this

is a type of almost direct democracy

you'll learn about direct democracy

where the people all vote on laws

themselves okay so our next ablis

quote-unquote just an equal laws and

this leads to another principle by the

way principles are kind of like big

ideas that the people live by okay so

this would lead to a big principle known

as rule of law and you need to know this

this is the notion that laws make up

kind of foundation of the way people

live their lives and treat one another

to live under the rule of law you know

that everyone should be treated fairly

and you can feel safe knowing that you

are protected by laws now another

principle found in the Mayflower Compact

is the social contract which we talked

about last week with John Locke

the settlers who sign the document

promised to submit to these rules for

their quote better order and

preservation which means that their

safety okay their preservation their

order this is to make sure that they

would have a safe and orderly Society

okay and submission by submitting right

submission means that you give up some

of your power to a greater Authority

which in this case will be the laws and

government that they were establishing

okay so we have rule of law and social

contract there so here's our Mayflower

Compact review again it's really helpful

to know the date and we are talking 1620

and the rest are your bullets make a

flashcard with the stuff or add it to

your timeline whatever you need to do to

memorize it

okay so self-government it's a tradition

that exists in New England they set

establish the principle that America was

gonna be ruling themselves the social

contract very important we the

undersigned we agree okay this is the

social contract between the people and

the rulers how are we gonna get together

and exist peacefully and finally ruled

by law and by the way

rule by law will be a whole lesson in

itself coming up rule of law very

important to America okay so our last

two documents are going to be much

quicker so let's fly through these our

next document chronologically is the

English Bill of Rights now you're going

to learn about the u.s. Bill of Rights

so please don't get the two confused

okay well the English Bill of Rights has

some of in fact a lot of the same rights

as the u.s. Bill of Rights there are two

entirely different documents written

about a hundred years apart

and now before I get into this I should

probably tell you what a right is right

is something that you can do that cannot

be taken away by the government okay

however there's limits on your rights

for instance I have free speech which

means I can say just about anything I

want however that doesn't give me the

right to threaten someone a good way to

think about rights are things that you

can do you could pretty much do whatever

you want really until you start taking

away someone's rights okay so my rights

exist right up into the point where I

start taking away your rights now the

English Bill of Rights was written about

450 years after the Magna Carta and some

of the rights in it are the same so we

can only assume that this is because

Kings after the Magna Carta didn't

always live by the rules of the Magna


okay the struggle between the Kings and

what was by this point Parliament was


sometimes as Kings didn't even let

Parliament meet now in our last video we

talked about the English Civil War and

so you know that there was a big

struggle during the 1600s between

Parliament which is again is the

lawmaking body of England and the king

in 1689 factions representing Parliament

overthrew King James ii of england and

they put in a replacement king and queen

william and mary now in order to be

given the throne the king and queen had

to agree and by the way all future King

and queens had to agree to submit to the

bill English Bill of Rights and at the

time this was known as the Glorious

Revolution so what did the king and

queen and few

King Queens agree to uphold well they we

see that they needed the consent of

Parliament for taxes and laws something

that was agreed to in the Magna Carta

but obviously not followed by by

previous Kings the right to petition the

king and we defined petition in a

previous video as a formal complaint by

the way complaining about our rulers is

the foundation of free speech next we

see the right to bear arms or keep

weapons something that is a big issue in

our country today we see trial by jury

another repeat from the Magna Carta no

cruel and unusual punishment and some

day you'll talk about some of the pretty

crazy things they used to do in these

times as forms of punishment like

burning at the stake

lots of threat of very cruel punishments

and the last one was no standing armies

which meant no permanent armies now this

is the only right in the list and there

were others that I left out but these

are the big ones you need to know this

is the only one that is not a part of

the US Bill of Rights and all the other

ones you can find in our Bill of Rights

however keeping a standing army a

permanent army is something we're gonna

discuss in our next video because the

British kept a standing army in the

thirteen colonies mostly really in

Massachusetts but they kept a standing

army over this and this made us really

mad ok it seems kind of obvious today I

mean we have a massive standing army and

a lot of countries do but at the time

people thought this gave the government

too much power and that they might use

this army against their own people which

by the way is a problem today in fact

I'm thinking of Syria ok

but this was something at the time that

was controversial okay so what do we

need to know what do we need to remember

about the English Bill of Rights and you

know in our last video we talked about

the time period known as the

Enlightenment and that is this time

period okay this is a big movement

during this time to put limits on the

power of rulers especially kings of

Queens and this is gonna play a major

role in our next video when America is

ready to declare their independence our


you've got your date you've got 1689

trial by jury free speech is a good one

to remember for that and its influence

am on the u.s. bill of rights okay if

you have a question about the English

Bill of Rights probably one of those

four it's gonna be your answer okay and

again this is a great segue to our last

document which in this case was a

pamphlet known as common sense by a

writer named Thomas Paine and Thomas

Paine wrote this pamphlet by the way a

pamphlet is like a mini book and by the

way the word pamphlet will be a good

clue if you see it in an excerpt they're

talking about Thomas Paine's Common

Sense this was a pamphlet that was

basically telling the colonists hey why

are we still being ruled by the British

we should be our own country in other

words it's only common sense to declare

our independence from Great Britain now

this was like a number one best-selling

book during 1776 if they had that list

it's like it was like as popular as

Harry Potter times ten okay everyone was

talking about it now next week we're

gonna be talking about the Boston

Massacre and the Boston Tea Party both

of which already happened

we were already fighting the British

outside a box outside of Boston in

Lexington and Concord by the time this

pamphlet was written okay so America was

definitely already on the path to

independence but this really helped give

the colonists that extra push and had a

huge influence on our declaring

independence okay so that is it and

we'll pick up on that next time I hope

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