Founding Documents & Ideas
Great Ideas that produced the miracle of America
The Declaration of Independence, The U.S. Constitution, and The Bill of Rights
Link to National Archives
What is the difference between a democracy and a republic, do you know?
Here is a quote from a longer article at Citizens for a Constitutional Republic site.
“The primary difference between a democracy and a republic is who is sovereign. In a republic, sovereign power is held by “We the People” individually such that each individual is “endowed by his creator with Unalienable rights”. These rights can never be taken away by majority vote. The sole purpose of a republican government is to “secure those individual rights”. In a democracy, sovereign power is invested collectively only in the group as a whole.”
(first 10 ammendments, ratified December 15, 1791)
First Amendment – Freedom of Speech, Press, Religion and Petition
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Second Amendment – Right to keep and bear arms
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
Third Amendment – Conditions for quarters of soldiers
No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
Fourth Amendment – Right of search and seizure regulated
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Fifth Amendment – Provisions concerning prosecution
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
Sixth Amendment – Right to a speedy trial, witnesses, etc.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
Seventh Amendment – Right to a trial by jury
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
Eighth Amendment – Excessive bail, cruel punishment
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Nineth Amendment – Rule of construction of Constitution
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
Tenth Amendment – Rights of States under Constitution
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
“Arguably the single most important piece of legislation passed by members of the earlier Continental Congresses other that the Declaration of Independence, it established the precedent by which the United States would expand westward across North America by the admission of new states, rather than by the expansion of existing states.” (Source: Wikipedia)
An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before but had once failed an entire class. That class had insisted that socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer.
The professor then said, “OK, we will have an experiment in this class on socialism. All grades would be averaged and everyone would receive the same grade so no one would fail and no one would receive an A.
After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a B. The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy.
As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little.
The second test average was a D! No one was happy.
When the 3rd test rolled around, the average was an F.
The scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else.
All failed, to their great surprise, and the professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed.
It could not be any simpler than that.
“You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for,that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.” – Dr. Adrian Rogers, 1931