The constitution of the United States, recognized as the supreme ruler of the United States, establishes the US government’s national structure. The US constitution has had 27 amendments since its coming into force in 1789 (“This is in order to accommodate the evolving needs of the nation (the Constitution) from the 18th century when the constitution was established/created and different from what it is today. The constitution sets basic rules such as the form of government, the first three articles of the constitution dictate the division of federal government powers into legislative powers (bicameral congress). There is also the executive with the other articles defining concept of federalism. This essay describes why and how the constitution and some of the amendments are important to the American government.
According to Byrum (105), a constitution amendment is regarded as modification done on an existing constitution for a state or even a nation so as to accommodate new development or policies that would improve the governance of the nation. Both the constitution and the amendments serve an important aspect with reference to the case of United States. In simple reference, one major importance of the constitution is that, it is the basis of laws in the country. This is due to the fact that, it defines how the nation ought to be run. The constitution is an important tool in every country. In the United States, it is regarded as the tool in which government powers are placed in the hands of Americans. The constitutions provide system check and balances of powers limiting the powers held by the government over the people. The first 10 amendments of the American constitution related to the individual freedoms granted to each of the American citizen. For example, the last amendment of the constitution to be implemented on the US constitution is the 27th amendment that was done in 1992. The amendment states that, any required change of the compensation for payment of Congress members can only be effected after the subsequent election of the representatives.
The constitution and the amendments that have been done overtime cover an extensive ground in terms of the operations of the government as well as the rules of society, towards the establishment of the United states as a nation. The primary body of the constitution defines or focuses on how an entire government runs. Focusing on the main body of the constitution; Article 1 addressed duties of the legislature, Article 2 duties of the executive branch, Article 3, outlines the judicial duties, Article 4 deals with the role of state with reference to the US nation as whole. Article 5, permits constitution amendments, Article 6 identify the supremacy of federal law over the state law in case a conflict ensues. Finally, there is Article 7which entails the signing off on the constitution by the 13 colonies. Focusing on the initial document regarded as the constitution of the United States, it focused more on the central government hence not addressing the citizens. The first 10 amendments well known as a bill of rights were approved so as address the fears that any government in power may fail to respect people and their rights. This ability of the constitution to be amended makes it be regarded as ‘a living document’ as it changes, adopting a new life as eras changes taking on different shapes, with the focus being to achieve the primary goal set in the preamble; perfecting the union. Despite the amendments, the purpose of the constitution remains the same.
Different amendments have been made to the US constitution since its adoption and enforced. Some amendments have been more important compared to others; however, each of the 27 amendments is key to the America as a nation and its governance. The importance and impact of the Americans the different amendments have different weight. With reference to his, the most important amendments to have been enacted to the American constitution are the 13th Amendment. Ratified on 6th Dec 1865 after the end of civil war, the thirteen amendments officially abolished the practice of slave trade in the US. The 13th amendment states that, ‘Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude unless it comes as a punishment for a crime committed and duly convicted, shall be in existence within US or any other place subject to the United States jurisdiction. The enactment of this amendment changed the country’s character. Without the abolishment of the slave trade, the United States would have with no moral seriousness to act as a global force in the case of civil rights around the globe. By giving equal rights to all American citizens helped in ending the slavery institution. The adoption of equal rights, adoption in the US, there was an inclusion of the minority groups in the building of the nation.
The United States Congress
This is the bicameral legislature with reference to the federal government of the US, and is comprised of two different chambers, the senate and the House of Representatives. It is a law making branch in the US, which was established with the enactment of the constitution in 1789. The congress represents the American people through making of national laws. Additionally, the congress shares powers to the executive branch of the US government. Compared with the other two branches of government, congress is the only one that is directly elected by the American citizens, hence regarded as the people’s representative. The Congress holds their meeting in the Capitol, Washington, DC, comprising a total of 535 voting members (453 representatives and 100 senators) (Whittington 580).
Under the United Constitution article I (this is the longest article in the US constitution), the congressional powers are well described. These include; making of laws, impeaching and trying federal officials, approve appointments made by the president and investigations and oversight. In addition, the congress is also responsible for declaring war, raise as well as provide money for public projects ensuring the proper expenditure. Additionally, the congress has the powers as granted by the constitution expressed powers as well as implied powers. However, its powers are limited to some extent, and the Congress cannot pass laws that punish an individual’s outside the court system (Whittington 589). The congress can also not outlaw an act, after it has been committed.
Importance of Voting in Changing One’s Human Rights and Daily Need
Citizens are key members of a country, and in turn one of the key ways in which they influence decisions and governmental decision is made through the voting process. Voting is also used to elect representatives of the people who would in turn make laws that are accepted by the people. Through voting, it’s the only way, people’s voices can be heard or people’s decision can be implemented. According to Espinosa (118), through voting the will of the people is respected through elections. More so, the ability to vote allows citizens in a country air their opinion and choice in different matters. In the United States, voting has not been a guarantee in the United States, with different amendments being enacted to define who ought to vote in the country. The 14th amendment establishes and guarantees rights and privileges of all people born in America. The 15th amendment passed the right to vote for all the Americans, regardless of their race, color or previous condition of servitude. In the 19th amendment not American shall be abridged his/her right to vote base son sex. In 24th amendment, it was allowed all American shall have a right to vote regardless of him paying or not paying his taxes. 26tth amendment permitted to vote minimum age of 18 (Espinosa 120).
In summary, the United States Is well established don the basis of a strong constitutional basis, with key and integral amendments continued to be added making it an all-round set of rules governing the county. Additionally, the country is described by different power sharing incidents such as the congress, which is the sole law maker. Voting is regarded as an integral exercise allows Americans to have the powers to decide who leads them or what laws are made. Finally, human rights are well defined in the constitutional.
“The Constitution of the United States (1787).” Constitution of the United States (1787), 8/1/2017, p. 1.
Byrum, Kristie. “The European Right to Be Forgotten: A Challenge to the United States Constitution’s First Amendment and to Professional Public Relations Ethics.” Public Relations Review, vol. 43, no. 1, Mar. 2017, pp. 102-111.
Espinosa, Tiffany, et al. “The Politics of U.S. National Park Unit Creation: The Influence of Electoral Competition, Political Control, and Presidential Election Years.” Journal of Park & Recreation Administration, vol. 35, no. 3, Fall2017, pp. 113-122.
Mirow, M. C. “The Patriot Constitution and International Constitution-Making.” Texas Review of Law & Politics, vol. 21, no. 3, Spring2017, pp. 477-517.
Whittington, Keith E. “The Place of Congress in the Constitutional Order.” Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, vol. 40, no. 3, June 2017, pp. 573-601.