“Because of man’s sinful nature, we cannot live in a state of anarchy; we need government to maintain law and order. But because those in authority have the same sinful nature as the rest of us, we cannot trust government with too much power” (Stripes). There have been conflicting views on the nature of man since the birth of the United States of America. Some have said that we cannot trust government because those in office will act on their natural tendencies to enslave the people and create a monarchy from which there would be no escape. Others question the acts of the people, saying that humans are too naïve and ignorant to be able to keep a strong governing force over themselves. No matter what is being said, there is still a key phrase that continues to show up in the views of everyone: a government is necessary in the system of a country. The Articles of Confederation were the first type of government that America experienced, and from there the government mutated and became what we use today.
After immigrants had congregated into the United States- then known only as colonies- they began to feel the British haughtily down their noses. The colonists revolted against the cruel treatment, and they broke away from their mother country. A new form of government was issued, but whether or not it would work was still to be decided.
The Articles of Confederation were written by the Second Continental Congress, but it took a while for the Articles to actually become law. There were barricades put in place to stop the colonists from becoming their own people. For example, governors had banned meetings where formal elections occurred, so “most of the congressional delegates were selected” at illegal conferences (Norton 143). “The very act of designating delegates to… Congress involved Americans [openly defying] British authority" (Norton 143). The unlawfully elected officials allowed their power to cultivate, like flies surrounding a roadside carcass, as the primitive state governments began to cave (Norton 144). The destruction of the individual little governments led to the need for a strong, central government.
The powers of the Continental Congress had been unfolding almost by accident, since the new little American world was focused more on booting the “red-coats” out of the country and less on creating an organized government system (Norton 175). It wasn’t until late in 1777 that American representatives "sent the Articles of Confederation to the states for ratification, and those Articles simply wrote into law the unplanned arrangements of the Continental Congress" (Norton 175). Finally, America had its first national constitution.
However, problems began to develop almost immediately. The states "devoted little attention to their national government," and they continued to live under their states' laws (Norton 174). Thus, "the United States of America was described as 'a firm league of friendship' in which each state 'retained its...