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The Five Elements Of American Political Culture

1559 words - 7 pages

While some of the world’s prominent countries, such as the United States, Great Britain, France and even Japan, support democracy, there are always cross-national differences created by political and economical culture. It is interesting to see how the United States differs from the rest of the other countries. The United States is unique because of the five elements of the American view of political culture. The five elements of American political culture are liberty, equality, democracy, civic duty and individual responsibility.
Liberty is another word for independence and freedom. The thirteen American colonies at the time of 1776 were in conflict with Great Britain. The thirteen original colonies wanted to unionize and become a new nation, thus being the United States of America. As ‘independence’ is in the title, the United States wanted liberty from Great Britain. The Declaration of Independence represents freedom from Great Britain. It represents America as a free country and no longer under authority of Great Britain. As the Declaration notes in talking about liberty, liberty is in fact very important for political culture. Stated in the Declaration, “These United States are, and of right ought to be, free and independent states” (Wilson, pg. A3). The Constitution of the United States also highlights the importance of liberty. Declared in the preamble or introduction, it says “We the People of the United States… secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and posterity” (Wilson, pg. A4). Liberty is special. The writers of both the Declaration and the Constitution knew that liberty is special, important and very rare. Not a lot of countries have liberty, freedom and independence to be an individual country.
Equality and liberty go hand in hand. Without equality, there would be no liberty and without liberty, there would be no equality. The main reason why we need to see others as equal is so that we can experience liberty. If we all acted like we are better than others, there would be no liberty. We all need to be on an even playing field. Although people today may not see others on an even playing field, equality is reflected in both the Declaration of Independence and the United States constitution. In just the few opening lines of the Declaration, equality is mentioned. The writers and the people that signed the declaration believed that “all men are created equal, and endowed by their Creator, with certain unalienable rights” (Wilson, Pg. A1). Our founding forefathers believed people as equal and they did not state politically or economically equal, just plain equal. Equality then reflects the United States constitution by liberty. By logic, if our forefathers believed all men are created equal, and if the United States Constitution reflects the spirit of the Declaration, then equality must be included. The Constitution reflects the Declaration because the Constitution mentions “in order to form a more...

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