The Roots of American Government

What team do you root for?

What team do you

Thank you very much in advance!

  • The question and the answer using «support» are idiomatic BrE.

    Thank you very much.

    Now, I’ll wait for the AmE answer.

    By the way, the Australian for this is different again: you

    barrack for

    Thank you for adding. It will be useful.

    It remains to be seen whether «root for» is used in AmE in the context I provided.

    Thank you in advance!

    Both «root for» and «support» are used in the actions of U.S. for sports fans, but the only «barrack» we have is sitting in the White House, as far as I know.

    Thank you for answering.

    Barrack‘ came to Brazil and made a beautiful speech. Many people like him here.


    Our president’s first name is Barack. (One «r».)

    are buildings used to house military personnel.

    The British (my dictionary says «mostly» British) verb barrack is to shout at, or for, a team or player at a sports event.

    In BE, to barrack at a sporting event is to shout derisive and usually somewhat insulting comments at the team you do not support. It’s a bit like heckling.
    As it is generally good-natured (or at least it used to be), it’s not surprising that same term is used in AusE for somewhat similar behaviour directed at the team you do support :)

    Elihu Root, (born Feb. 15, 1845, Clinton, N.Y., U.S.—died Feb. 7, 1937, New York, N.Y.), American lawyer and statesman, winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1912.

    Root received his law degree from New York University in 1867 and became a leading corporation lawyer. As U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York (1883–85) he came into close contact with Theodore Roosevelt, then a leader in New York Republican politics, and became Roosevelt’s friend and legal adviser.

    As secretary of war in President William McKinley’s (and, after McKinley’s assassination, Roosevelt’s) cabinet (1899–1903), Root worked out governmental arrangements for the former Spanish areas then under U.S. control as a result of the Spanish-American War. He was the primary author of the Foraker Act (1900), which provided for civil government in Puerto Rico. He established U.S. authority in the Philippines and wrote the instructions for an American governing commission sent there in 1900. He also effected a reorganization of the U.S. Army, established the principle of rotation of officers from staff to line, and created the Army War College in 1901.

    From 1909 to 1915, as a Republican senator from New York, Root sided with the William Howard Taft wing of the party. After the outbreak of World War I in Europe, he openly supported the Allies and was critical of President Woodrow Wilson’s policy of neutrality. He was a leading Republican supporter of international law and served on the commission of jurists that established the Permanent Court of International Justice (1920–21). President Warren Harding appointed him one of four U.S. delegates to the International Conference on the Limitation of Armaments (1921–22). In his later years Root worked closely with Andrew Carnegie on programs for international peace and for the advancement of science.

    This article was most recently revised and updated by Michael Ray.

    1. Considering the definition of «root against«: to will something/somebody not to win, to want/hope somebody not to win.

    2. My question: are the uses of «root against» idiomatic/common? If not, what do you suggest? Please take a look.

    Thank you in advance!

  • I won’t say that I’ve never heard this, but it isn’t a usage that I’ve ever used or that makes sense to me. Root for in this context really means «support» or even «cheer on» and you can’t really support or cheer against something, as far as I know.

    Yes, it is very common. You can replace ‘root‘ with ‘cheer‘ in each of your examples. I was told once that the Aussies (Australians) don’t say «to root for» because it is a vulgar way of saying to «to have sexual intercourse with someone (= to screw)». They apparently use «» instead. :rolleyes:

    On a side note, «to will something» in English sounds quite formal to me, and I don’t think we use it very often, at least not in the U.S.

    I, like djweaverbeaver, have heard it used in this way. «Root against» is very acceptable to my ears.

    I completely concur with Kate on this. Root is consistently used with for, meaning to strongly support something or someone, whether silently or actively. I’ve never heard such a phrase as «root against». You could side, shout, or demonstrate against—but not root.

    Where did you see a definition for «root against», Xavier? In the dictionaries I’ve checked, both American and British, there is no such definition—only root for.

    For some reason that is buried in ancient sports history, fans of the Boston Red Sox professional baseball team tend to dislike the New York Yankees. I have often heard people say they root against the Yankees — that is, they root for any team that the Yankees are playing. (So far in the current season, their rooting doesn’t seem to make much of a difference.)

    I, too, root for any team that’s playing the New York Yankees (not because I’m a Sox fan — it’s just on general principle). I never say that I «root against» them, but it could be that I’m in the minority here.

    Thank you, Egmont. I was waiting for someone Massachusetts to verify certain prpensities to «root against». While I am not a fan of the Yankees, I do not root against them. I reserve that particular expression of disdain for the Los Angeles team. No matter what they call themselves, they are not the Dodgers.

    Whether it’s correct usage or not, it’s definitely idiomatic amongst sports fans.

    Thank you all for your answers. So in sports it is commony used. I found many occurences on Google and you confirmed.

    In Brazil, there is also a literal equivalent.

    Just this weekend, I said to my uncle:

    I’m rooting against the Italians for beating Germany. ;)

    Never having heard «root against», I found it a logical, whimsical and amusing extension of «rooting for».
    Can we now expect to see phrases like «I am hoping against his speedy recovery»?

    Just this weekend, I said to my uncle:

    I’m rooting against the Italians for beating Germany. ;)

    I do think you can hope against something, Ironicus.

    I do think you can hope against something, Ironicus.

    As stated before, I don’t believe it’s necessarily correct, but it’s how many sports fans in the U.S. speak. :) Language is not always by the book.
    I can assure you that it’s very commonly used.

    I reread a day later, and yes, you are right Filsmith. It does sound idiomatic: I’m rooting against the Italians for beating Germany.

    I got hung up on the «for». It totally makes sense now. Sorry!

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    The years from the 1750s until the mid-1770s were uneasy times in the colonies. First the colonists fought the French and American Indians to gain land. Then they argued with the British king about their rights and freedom.

    Democracy in all the colonies grew rapidly. On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress took the step that many Americans believed was inevitable. It cut all political ties with Britain and declared that «these United Colonies are free, and independent states». Two days later, on July 4, it issued the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration of Independence is the most important document in American history. It was written by Thomas Jefferson, a lawyer from Virginia.

    After repeating that the colonies were now «free and independent states» it officially named them the United States of America. The Declaration of Independence was more than a statement that the colonies were a new nation. It said that governments should consist of representatives elected by the people; that the main reason that governments existed was to protect the rights of individual citizens.

    What Is Law?

    Law is the whole set of rules that are supported by the power of government and that control the behaviour of members of a society. The law itself provides the basic structure within which commerce and industry operate. It safeguards the rights of individuals, regulates their dealings with others and enforces the duties of government.

    There are two main kinds of the law — public and private (civil). Private law concerns disputes among citizens within a country, and public law concerns disputes between citizens and the state, or between one state and another.

    The system of law consists of different categories of law.

    There are laws which enable citizens to take legal action against the state. These actions are part of constitutional law. A constitution is the political and ideological structure within which a system of laws operates. Most countries have a formal written Constitution describing how laws are to be made and enforced.

    Many countries face similar social, economic and political problems. Nations have always made political and economic treaties with each other. International law is created to regulate relations between governments and also between private citizens of one country and those of another.

    Criminal law deals with wrongful acts harmful to the community and punishable by the state.

    Civil law deals with individual rights, duties and obligations towards one another.

    As well as defining the powers of government, most constitutions describe the fundamental rights of citizens. These usually include general declarations about freedom and equality, but, also some specific provisions. The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) was first adopted in 1950 and has now been signed by every country of Western Europe. Individual citizens of these countries have the right to bring a complaint before the European Commission if they think their government has broken the Convention. But despite the development of legally binding national and international conventions, millions of people in the world still do not enjoy human rights.

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    1. I learned that the expressions «what team do you root for?»(AmE) and «what team do you support?»(BrE) are idiomatic ones.

    2. I have seen and heard «what is your favorite team?» much more frequently than «what team do you support/root for?».

    3. : Do you agree that the option «what is your favorite team?» is more commonly used in English? What do you think?

    What team do you root for? What team do you support? What is you favorite team?

    I root for the Lakers. I support Chelsea. My favorite team is the Warriors.

    Thank you in advance!

  • No, I’m sorry, I don’t think I do agree:p.

    If I was talking to a football fan, I’d be much more likely to ask «What team do you support?» than «What is your favourite team?»

    (Actually, I’d be even more likely to ask «


    do you support?»)

    It would surprise me to learn that ‘what’s your favourite team?’ has supplanted either of the other forms you mention, but WRF is nothing if not mind expanding — I am prepared to be surprised.

    In BrE you say support, e.g I support England, I support Arsenal, etc. You might also say I’ll be cheering for so and so, if its a game where you don’t regularly support either team, but have chosen one or the other in that instance.

    (Actually, I’d be even more likely to ask «


    do you support?»)

    That’s exactly how I’d ask the question. if I cared

    It would surprise me to learn that ‘what’s your favourite team?’ has supplanted either of the other forms you mention, but WRF is nothing if not mind expanding — I am prepared to be surprised.

    On behalf of the US of A — surprise! :D If I heard «what team do you root for,» I would scour the area trying to find the time machine that had transported me to 1956. And «support» is definitely BE. It’s «what’s your favorite team» in the US, or in a more specific context: «Are you a Cubs fan or a Cardinals fan?» (The correct answer is Cubs, by the way. :D)

    As a person only marginally interested in sports, I can have a favorite team without «rooting for» or «supporting» any of them so I find «Who’s (or What’s) your favorite team?» a much more useful and general question.
    I think that «root for» is still used but it sounds humorously old-fashioned to me. Perhaps some more sports-minded Americans will add some comments.

    I agree with Loob and Don Ew. If the person seems to be a football fan, I ask, «Who do you support?» (Of course, if he/she is wearing one of those ridiculously overpriced replica football shirts (it can happen), this question is not recommended.)

    I’d like to add to all the good points made above that «the team I root for/support» and «my favorite team» are not always the same thing. My favorite team is, now and always, the Angels, but I am quite capable of rooting for or supporting another team if that team doesn’t happen to be playing the Angels. For example, I always root for anybody who’s playing the New York Yankees.

    : Do you agree that the option «what is your favorite team?» is more commonly used in English? What do you think?

    Perhaps, at least in AE, but we’d specify the sport and level, e.g. college or professional, since we have hoards of fans of college sports, as well as the professional variety, to satisfy their vicarious cravings.

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    «Support» sounds strange to my ear as well.

    If I might be permitted a «jocular» comment, «athletic supporter» is a device to protect the male genital organs during sporting events and thus is often used in a rather ribald manner if somebody refers to a sports fan as a «supporter.» (AE)

    If I might be permitted a «jocular» comment, «athletic supporter» is a device to protect the male genital organs during sporting events and thus is often used in a rather ribald manner if somebody refers to a sports fan as a «supporter.» (AE)

    (I was wondering who’d be the first to bring this up:D)

    You might also say I’ll be cheering for so and so, if its a game where you don’t regularly support either team, but have chosen one or the other in that instance.

    Yes, if it’s a question of temporary support, eg. for what remains of EURO 2012, you could ask «Who are you (going to be) cheering for now (that your team has been knocked out)?» or you could use «support» in the present continuous: «Who are you supporting now?» (BE)

    This article is about the high culture and popular culture of the United States. For customs and way of life, see Society of the United States.

    The development of the culture of the United States of America—, , , , , , and the —has been marked by a tension between two strong sources of inspiration: European sophistication and domestic originality. Frequently, the best American artists have managed to harness both sources such as , Jimi Hendrix, etc.

    American culture also exhibits a tendency to hybridize pop culture and so-called high culture, and generally questions normative standards for artistic output. This is likely an effect of the country’s tradition, and the nation’s history of constitutionally protected freedom of speech and expression, as enshrined in the .

    File:Betsy Ross sewing.jpg

    was an American who was credited by her relatives in 1870 with making the first .

    Colonists from the United States formed the now-independent country of .

    Main article: Literature of the United States

    Main article: Poetry of the United States

    Main article: American comic book

    Since the invention of the comic book format in the 1930s, the United States has been the leading producer with only the books (during the inter-war period and up until the 1970s) and the Japanese as close competitors in terms of quantity.

    Comic book sales began to decline after World War II, when the medium was competing with the spread of and mass market paperback books. In the 1960s, comic books’ audience expanded to include students who favored the , » in the real world» trend initiated by at . The 1960s also saw the advent of the . Later, the recognition of the comic medium among academics, and helped solidify comics as a serious with established , stylistic , and artistic evolution.

    Main article: Music of the United States

    The earliest inhabitants of the United States were who played the first music in the area. Beginning in the 17th century, from the , , and began arriving in large numbers, bringing with them new styles and instruments. brought musical traditions, and each subsequent wave of immigrants contributed to a .

    Much of modern popular music can trace its roots to the emergence in the late 19th century of and the growth of in the 1920s. The African American basis for popular music used elements derived from European and indigenous musics. The United States has also seen documented folk music and recorded popular music produced in the ethnic styles of the , , , , and communities, among others.

    Many American cities and towns have vibrant music scenes which, in turn, support a number of regional musical styles. Aside from cities such as , , , and , many smaller cities have produced distinctive styles of music. The and traditions in , the folk and popular styles of , and the and old time music of the states are a few examples of diversity in American music.

    Main article: Cinema of the United States

    American cinema has had a profound effect on cinema across the world since the early . Its history is sometimes separated into four main periods: the era, Classical Hollywood cinema, , and the contemporary period (after 1980).

    Main article: Television in the United States

    Main article: Dance in the United States

    There is great variety in dance in the United States, it is the home of the and its derivative Rock and Roll, and modern (associated with the United States of America due to its historic development in that country—nineteen U.S. states have designated it as their official state dance) and one of the major centers for . There is a variety of and concert or performance dance forms with also a range of traditions of dances.

    Main article: Visual arts of the United States

    In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, American artists primarily painted landscapes and portraits in a realistic style. A parallel development taking shape in rural America was the movement, which began as a reaction to the . Developments in modern art in Europe came to America from exhibitions in New York City such as the in 1913. After World War II, New York replaced as the center of the art world. Painting in the United States today covers a vast range of styles.

    Main article: Architecture of the United States

    The has a of that includes a wide variety of styles.

    The United States of America is a relatively young country, and the Native Americans did not leave any buildings comparable to the grandeur of those in Mexico or Peru. For this reason, the overriding theme of American Architecture is modernity: the skyscrapers of the 20th century are the ultimate symbol of this modernity.

    Architecture in the US is regionally diverse and has been shaped by many external forces, not only English. US Architecture can therefore be said to be eclectic, something unsurprising in such a multicultural society.

    Main article: Sculpture of the United States

    The history of sculpture in the United States reflects the country’s 18th century foundation in Roman republican civic values as well as Protestant Christianity, both of which sought truth in the spoken word of orator or minister and neither of which required the visualizaton of magnificence, power, solemnity, or profundity that characterized the sculptural traditions of European (as well as Asian) civilizations.

    Main article: Theater in the United States

    Theater of the United States is based in the tradition, mostly borrowed from the performance styles prevalent in , especially . Today, it is heavily interlaced with American , , , and , and it is not uncommon for a single story to appear in all forms. Regions with significant music scenes often have strong theater and traditions as well. may be the most popular form: it is certainly the most colorful, and choreographed motions pioneered on stage have found their way onto movie and television screens. in New York City is generally considered the pinnacle of commercial U.S. theater, though this form appears all across the country. and diversify the theatre experience in New York. Another city of particular note is , which boasts the most diverse and dynamic theater scene in the country. Regional or resident theatres in the United States are professional companies outside of New York City that produce their own seasons. There is also and showcase theatre (performing arts group). Even tiny rural communities sometimes awe audiences with extravagant productions.

    Main article: Cuisine of the United States

    Main article: Fashion in the United States

    АНОО ВПО «Одинцовский гуманитарный

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    Roots of Democracy in the USA

    Студентка 4 курса

    Нестерова Наталья Васильевна

    преподаватель – к.ф.н. Е.В.Белик

    Одинцово 2014 г.

    — President Abraham Lincoln

    Gettysburg Address, 1863

    Speaking at the dedication of a national cemetery at Gettysburg in the midst of a great civil war
    fought to preserve the United States as a country, President Lincoln
    gave us in his ringing conclusion perhaps the best-known definition
    of democracy in American history. By «government of the people,
    by the people, and for the people,» he meant, the essentials of
    democratic government he so well described are applicable to all nations
    that aspire to a democratic society.

    Democracy is hard, perhaps the most complex and difficult of all forms of government. It is filled with tensions and contradictions, and
    requires that its members labor diligently to make it work. Democracy
    is not designed for efficiency, but for accountability; a democratic
    government may not be able to act as quickly as a dictatorship, but
    once committed to a course of action it can draw upon deep wellsprings
    of popular support. Democracy, certainly in its American form, is never
    a finished product, but is always evolving. The outer forms of government
    in the United States have altered little in two centuries, but once
    we look past the surface we discover great changes. Yet, most Americans
    believe — and rightly so — that the basic principles underlying their
    government derive directly from notions first enunciated by the framers
    of the Constitution in 1787.

    The root principles

    Constitutionalism: Law-making must take place within certain parameters; there must
    be approved methods for laws to be made and to be changed, and certain
    areas — namely the rights of individuals — must be off limits to the
    whims of majority rule. A constitution is a law, but at the same time
    it is much more than that. It is the organic document of a government,
    laying out the powers of the different branches as well as the limits
    on governmental authority. A key feature of constitutionalism is that
    this basic framework cannot easily be changed because of the wishes
    of a transient majority. It requires the consent of the governed expressed
    in a clear and unambiguous manner. In the United States, the Constitution
    has been amended only 27 times since 1787. The framers made the amendment
    process difficult but not impossible. Most of the amendments have extended
    democracy by enlarging individual rights and wiping away differences
    based on race or gender. None of these amendments were lightly undertaken,
    and when adopted, all had the support of a great majority of the people.

    Creation of law: History records that formal laws have been made by mankind for five
    millennia, but the methods different societies have used to make the
    rules under which they will live have varied enormously, from edicts
    by god-kings to majority vote at village meetings. In the United States,
    law is made at many levels, from local town councils, on up through
    state legislatures, to the U.S. Congress. But at all these levels, there
    is a large input from the citizenry, either directly or indirectly.
    Law-making bodies recognize that they are responsible to their constituents,
    and if they do not legislate in the people’s best interests, they will
    face defeat at the next election. The key to democratic law-making is
    not the mechanism or even the forum in which it takes place, but the
    sense of accountability to the citizenry and the need to recognize the
    wishes of the people.

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    An independent judiciary: Alexander Hamilton remarked in The Federalist in 1788-89 that the
    courts, being without the powers of either sword or purse, would be
    «the least dangerous branch» of the government. Yet courts
    can be very powerful in a democracy, and in many ways are the operating
    arm through which constitutional constraints are interpreted and enforced.
    In the United States, the courts may declare acts of Congress and of
    state legislatures invalid because they conflict with the Constitution,
    and may enjoin presidential actions on similar grounds. The greatest
    defender of individual rights in the United States has been the court
    system; this is made possible because most judges have life tenure and
    can focus on legal issues without the distraction of politics. While
    not all constitutional courts are the same, there must be a body that
    has the authority to determine what the Constitution says, and when
    different branches of government have exceeded their powers.

    Role of interest groups: In the 18th century, and in fact well into the 19th, law-making represented
    primarily a dialogue between the voters and their elected representatives
    in Congress or in state and local governments. Because the population
    was smaller, governmental programs more limited, and communications
    simpler, there was no need for citizens to resort to mediating organizations
    for assistance in making their views known. But, in the 20th century,
    society grew more complex, and the role of government expanded. Now
    there are many issues that voters need to speak about, and in order
    to make their voices heard on specific matters, citizens create lobby
    groups, groups advocating public and private interests, and non-governmental
    organizations (NGOs) devoted to single issues. There has been much internal
    criticism of this aspect of American democracy, and some people claim
    that those interests with access to large sums of money can make their
    voices better heard than those with fewer resources. There is a certain
    truth to that criticism, but the fact of the matter is that there are
    hundreds of these groups who help to educate the public and lawmakers
    about particular matters, and in doing so they help many individual
    citizens of ordinary means get their views known to their lawmakers
    in a complex age. With the age of the Internet upon us, the number of
    voices will increase even more, and these NGOs will help to refine and
    focus citizen interest in an effective manner.

    Protecting minority rights: If by «democracy» we mean rule by the majority, then one
    of the great problems in a democracy is how minorities are treated.
    By «minorities» we do not mean people who voted against the
    winning party, but rather those who are indelibly different from the
    majority by reasons of race, religion, or ethnicity. In the United States,
    the great problem has been that of race; it took a bloody civil war
    to free black slaves, and then another century before people of color
    could count on free exercise of their constitutional rights. The problem
    of racial equality is one that the United States is still wrestling
    with today. But this is part of the evolutionary nature of democracy,
    the drive to become more inclusive and to grant to those who are different
    from the majority not only protection against persecution but the opportunity
    to participate as full and equal citizens. Examples of nations treating
    their minorities in a bloody and horrible manner are numerous, and the
    Nazi Holocaust against the Jews is only the most vivid illustration.
    But no society can aspire to call itself democratic if it systematically
    excludes specific groups from the full protection of the laws.

    Civilian control of the military: In ancient times, the primary responsibility of a leader was to lead
    society’s military forces either to defend the nation or to conquer
    others. All too often, the popularity of a successful general led him
    to seek control of the government through force; he who controlled the
    military could easily sweep all others aside. In modern times we have
    seen, far too many times to count, a colonel or general using the power
    of the army in a coup to overthrow the civilian government. In a democracy,
    the military must not only be under the actual control of civilian authorities,
    but it must have a culture that emphasizes the role of soldiers as the
    servants and not the rulers of society. This is easier to accomplish
    when there is a citizen army, whose officers come from all sectors of
    society and after a term of service, return to civilian life. But the
    principle remains the same: The military must always be subordinate;
    its job is to protect democracy and not rule.

    We can derive certain overarching themes. First, and most important,
    is that in a democracy the ultimate source of all authority is the people.
    The Constitution of the United States announces this boldly in its first
    words: «We, the People of the United States . . . do ordain and
    establish this Constitution.» All powers in government must come
    from the people, and must be accepted by them as legitimate. This validation
    takes place through a variety of means, including the processes of making
    law as well as free and fair elections.

    A second general principle is that there must be a division of powers
    so that no one part of the government can become so strong as to subvert the will of the people. Although the president
    is always seen as the most powerful office in American government, the
    Constitution limits those powers and requires the chief executive to
    work in harmony with the other branches as well as with the constituency
    of voters. Although civilian control of the military would seem to place
    great power in the president’s hands, the culture underlying the military
    in a democratic society works against the misuse of that force. Courts
    also exist to serve as limitations not only on the executive but on
    the legislative branch as well. In a democracy, government must be in
    a balance, and all the different parts must appreciate the wisdom and
    necessity of that balance.

    Third, the rights of individuals and of minorities must be respected, and the majority may not use
    its power to deprive any person of basic liberties. In a democracy this
    may often be difficult, especially if there is a diverse population
    holding diverse views on critical subjects. But once a government deprives
    one group of rights, then the rights of all the people are in jeopardy.

    These themes run throughout the Democracy Papers, and each topic supports
    all of these overarching principles. The will of the people is ensured
    through free and fair elections, through the making of law, through a free press
    examining the workings of government, and through a right to know what
    the government is doing. It expresses itself through interest groups,
    even if a bit unevenly. In the United States, the division of powers
    is mandated by the Constitution, an organic document held in near reverence
    by the American people. It is also seen in limitations imposed upon
    the government, by civilian control of the military, and by a federal
    system. And rights of minorities are ensured through many means, the
    most important of which is an independent judiciary.

    But can these principles be translated into other cultures? There
    is no simple answer, because the success of any governmental system
    depends on so many intertwined features. During the colonial period in American history,
    the imperial government in London could not exert close control of its
    distant American colonies, and so power and authority devolved onto
    the local legislatures. This in turn led to a federal system encapsulated
    in a Constitution that reflects the peculiar historical situation of
    the people of the United States. The perceived excesses of the British
    king led to limits on executive authority, while the experience of a
    citizen militia laid the basis for civilian control of the military.

    Individual rights proved harder, but as democracy has evolved in the
    United States, the rights of the people have expanded from those of
    white, property-owning men to include men and women of all races, colors, and creeds. Diversity, originally seen as a problem for government,
    became one of the great strengths of democracy. With so many different
    peoples, religions and cultures in large democratic nations, any effort
    to impose one uniform manner of life would have proven disastrous. Instead
    of fighting diversity, the American people made it a cornerstone of
    their democratic faith.

    Other nations as they experiment with democracy — and it is always
    an experiment — will need to examine how the attributes described in these papers can best be created and sustained in their own
    culture. There is no one way; to paraphrase the poet Walt Whitman, democracy
    is a multitude, often contradicting itself. But if we keep our eye on
    the basic, immutable principles — that ultimate authority resides in
    the people, that governmental powers must be limited, and that individual
    rights must be protected-then there can be many ways in which to achieve
    those goals.

    Constitutionalism, in its most general meaning, is «a complex of ideas, attitudes,
    and patterns of behavior elaborating the principle that the authority
    of government derives from and is limited by a body of fundamental law».

    1) Roots of Democracy in America by author E. Holt (1941)

    2) Современные соединенные штаты Америки.
    Энциклопедический справочник. — 1988

    3) Власова Е. А., Костенко С.М. Focus on the USA.
    – СПб.: Наука, 1992

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    the United States Army, major branch of the United States armed forces charged with the preservation of peace and security and the defense of the country. The army furnishes most of the ground forces in the U.S. military organization.

    Origins in the American Revolution and early republic

    In the early months of the American Revolution, the first regular U.S. fighting force, the Continental Army, was organized by the Second Continental Congress on June 14, 1775. It comprised the 22,000 militia troops then besieging Boston and an additional 5,000 militiamen in New York. It was placed under the control of a five-member civilian board, and U.S. military forces have remained in civilian control ever since. George Washington formally took command of these colonial troops on July 3, 1775, and soon discovered that the militiamen were largely accustomed to going home whenever a particular danger was past. In January 1776 the Continental Congress partially responded to Washington’s urgent appeals by establishing a single standing force directly raised from all of the colonies, distinct from the several colonial militias. These “Continentals” were enlisted for longer terms and were trained more thoroughly than the militias; they provided Washington with a small but stable nucleus with which to work and proved to be his chief reliance in the dark hours of the war. They were the beginning of the regular army.

    As the Revolution drew to a close, the Continental Congress asked Washington for his recommendations for a peacetime military force. In response, he prepared Sentiments on a Peace Establishment (May 1, 1783), a sweeping assessment of the strategic situation facing the new country. Washington believed that the United States needed only a small regular army to deal with Indian threats and to provide a nucleus for expansion by “a well-organized militia” in time of foreign war. Instead of the independent and diverse militia forces of the individual states, which had proved so unreliable during the Revolution, Washington recommended that the state contingents be organized as elements of a single national militia so that all would be similarly trained and equipped. He also recommended the development of war industries and arsenals, along with the establishment of a military school system. Congress ignored this blueprint for a national military policy, and on November 2, 1783, the entire army was disbanded except “twenty-five privates to guard the stores at Fort Pitt and fifty-five to guard the stores at West Point.” Indian disturbances on the frontier, however, almost immediately forced an increase in the standing force. When Washington was inaugurated as president in 1789, the number of men in service was 595.

    A soldier standing guard in a Washington, D.C. street with the ruins of buildings that were destroyed during the riots that followed the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., April 8, 1968.

    By All Military Meanings Necessary: Vocab Quiz

    During the War of 1812, the inadequacy of the Militia Act of 1792 was clearly demonstrated. A total of about 60,000 men served in the regular army during the almost three years of war. This force bore the brunt of conflict with about 70,000 British regulars, 2,000 efficient Canadian militia, and about 10,000 Indians, many of the last of whom were part of Tecumseh’s confederation. At one time or another, nearly 460,000 American militiamen were under arms, but few saw battle. Typical of those who did see action were the 6,500 militiamen at Bladensburg, Maryland, who were tasked with defending the national capital but fled in panic after one volley from 1,500 British regulars.

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    What is the United States?

    Should the United States maintain its embargo against Cuba?

    Should the United States continue its use of drone strikes abroad?

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    United States, officially United States of America, abbreviated U.S. or U.S.A., byname America, country in North America, a federal republic of 50 states. Besides the 48 conterminous states that occupy the middle latitudes of the continent, the United States includes the state of Alaska, at the northwestern extreme of North America, and the island state of Hawaii, in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The conterminous states are bounded on the north by Canada, on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, on the south by the Gulf of Mexico and Mexico, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean. The United States is the fourth largest country in the world in area (after Russia, Canada, and China). The national capital is Washington, which is coextensive with the District of Columbia, the federal capital region created in 1790.

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    Anthem of United States (see article)

    Head Of State And Government:
    President: Joe Biden
    331,449,281; (2023 est.) 339,277,0002
    Currency Exchange Rate:
    1 US dollar equals 0.917 euro
    Form Of Government:

    The major characteristic of the United States is probably its great variety. Its physical environment ranges from the Arctic to the subtropical, from the moist rain forest to the arid desert, from the rugged mountain peak to the flat prairie. Although the total population of the United States is large by world standards, its overall population density is relatively low. The country embraces some of the world’s largest urban concentrations as well as some of the most extensive areas that are almost devoid of habitation.

    The United States contains a highly diverse population. Unlike a country such as China that largely incorporated indigenous peoples, the United States has a diversity that to a great degree has come from an immense and sustained global immigration. Probably no other country has a wider range of racial, ethnic, and cultural types than does the United States. In addition to the presence of surviving Native Americans (including American Indians, Aleuts, and Eskimos) and the descendants of Africans taken as enslaved persons to the New World, the national character has been enriched, tested, and constantly redefined by the tens of millions of immigrants who by and large have come to America hoping for greater social, political, and economic opportunities than they had in the places they left. (It should be noted that although the terms “America” and “Americans” are often used as synonyms for the United States and its citizens, respectively, they are also used in a broader sense for North, South, and Central America collectively and their citizens.)

    The United States is the world’s greatest economic power, measured in terms of gross domestic product (GDP). The nation’s wealth is partly a reflection of its rich natural resources and its enormous agricultural output, but it owes more to the country’s highly developed industry. Despite its relative economic self-sufficiency in many areas, the United States is the most important single factor in world trade by virtue of the sheer size of its economy. Its exports and imports represent major proportions of the world total. The United States also impinges on the global economy as a source of and as a destination for investment capital. The country continues to sustain an economic life that is more diversified than any other on Earth, providing the majority of its people with one of the world’s highest standards of living.

    The United States Supreme Court building, Washington, D.C.

    U.S. History Highlights: Part Two

    The United States is relatively young by world standards, being less than 250 years old; it achieved its current size only in the mid-20th century. America was the first of the European colonies to separate successfully from its motherland, and it was the first nation to be established on the premise that sovereignty rests with its citizens and not with the government. In its first century and a half, the country was mainly preoccupied with its own territorial expansion and economic growth and with social debates that ultimately led to civil war and a healing period that is still not complete. In the 20th century the United States emerged as a world power, and since World War II it has been one of the preeminent powers. It has not accepted this mantle easily nor always carried it willingly; the principles and ideals of its founders have been tested by the pressures and exigencies of its dominant status. The United States still offers its residents opportunities for unparalleled personal advancement and wealth. However, the depletion of its resources, the contamination of its environment, and the continuing social and economic inequality that perpetuates areas of poverty and blight all threaten the fabric of the country.

    The District of Columbia is discussed in the article Washington. For discussion of other major U.S. cities, see the articles Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. Political units in association with the United States include Puerto Rico, discussed in the article Puerto Rico, and several Pacific islands, discussed in Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa.

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    The two great sets of elements that mold the physical environment of the United States are, first, the geologic, which determines the main patterns of landforms, drainage, and mineral resources and influences soils to a lesser degree, and, second, the atmospheric, which dictates not only climate and weather but also in large part the distribution of soils, plants, and animals. Although these elements are not entirely independent of one another, each produces on a map patterns that are so profoundly different that essentially they remain two separate geographies. (Since this article covers only the conterminous United States, see also the articles Alaska and Hawaii.)


    The centre of the conterminous United States is a great sprawling interior lowland, reaching from the ancient shield of central Canada on the north to the Gulf of Mexico on the south. To east and west this lowland rises, first gradually and then abruptly, to mountain ranges that divide it from the sea on both sides. The two mountain systems differ drastically. The Appalachian Mountains on the east are low, almost unbroken, and in the main set well back from the Atlantic. From New York to the Mexican border stretches the low Coastal Plain, which faces the ocean along a swampy, convoluted coast. The gently sloping surface of the plain extends out beneath the sea, where it forms the continental shelf, which, although submerged beneath shallow ocean water, is geologically identical to the Coastal Plain. Southward the plain grows wider, swinging westward in Georgia and Alabama to truncate the Appalachians along their southern extremity and separate the interior lowland from the Gulf.

    West of the Central Lowland is the mighty Cordillera, part of a global mountain system that rings the Pacific basin. The Cordillera encompasses fully one-third of the United States, with an internal variety commensurate with its size. At its eastern margin lie the Rocky Mountains, a high, diverse, and discontinuous chain that stretches all the way from New Mexico to the Canadian border. The Cordillera’s western edge is a Pacific coastal chain of rugged mountains and inland valleys, the whole rising spectacularly from the sea without benefit of a coastal plain. Pent between the Rockies and the Pacific chain is a vast intermontane complex of basins, plateaus, and isolated ranges so large and remarkable that they merit recognition as a region separate from the Cordillera itself.

    These regions—the Interior Lowlands and their upland fringes, the Appalachian Mountain system, the Atlantic Plain, the Western Cordillera, and the Western Intermontane Region—are so various that they require further division into 24 major subregions, or provinces.

    The Interior Lowlands and their upland fringes

    Andrew Jackson is supposed to have remarked that the United States begins at the Alleghenies, implying that only west of the mountains, in the isolation and freedom of the great Interior Lowlands, could people finally escape Old World influences. Whether or not the lowlands constitute the country’s cultural core is debatable, but there can be no doubt that they comprise its geologic core and in many ways its geographic core as well.

    In the United States most of the crystalline platform is concealed under a deep blanket of sedimentary rocks. In the far north, however, the naked Canadian Shield extends into the United States far enough to form two small but distinctive landform regions: the rugged and occasionally spectacular Adirondack Mountains of northern New York and the more-subdued and austere Superior Upland of northern Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. As in the rest of the shield, glaciers have stripped soils away, strewn the surface with boulders and other debris, and obliterated preglacial drainage systems. Most attempts at farming in these areas have been abandoned, but the combination of a comparative wilderness in a northern climate, clear lakes, and white-water streams has fostered the development of both regions as year-round outdoor recreation areas.

    South of the Adirondack Mountains and the Superior Upland lies the boundary between crystalline and sedimentary rocks; abruptly, everything is different. The core of this sedimentary region—the heartland of the United States—is the great Central Lowland, which stretches for 1,500 miles (2,400 kilometres) from New York to central Texas and north another 1,000 miles to the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. To some, the landscape may seem dull, for heights of more than 2,000 feet (600 metres) are unusual, and truly rough terrain is almost lacking. Landscapes are varied, however, largely as the result of glaciation that directly or indirectly affected most of the subregion. North of the MissouriOhio river line, the advance and readvance of continental ice left an intricate mosaic of boulders, sand, gravel, silt, and clay and a complex pattern of lakes and drainage channels, some abandoned, some still in use. The southern part of the Central Lowland is quite different, covered mostly with loess (wind-deposited silt) that further subdued the already low relief surface. Elsewhere, especially near major rivers, postglacial streams carved the loess into rounded hills, and visitors have aptly compared their billowing shapes to the waves of the sea. Above all, the loess produces soil of extraordinary fertility. As the Mesabi iron was a major source of America’s industrial wealth, its agricultural prosperity has been rooted in Midwestern loess.

    The Central Lowland resembles a vast saucer, rising gradually to higher lands on all sides. Southward and eastward, the land rises gradually to three major plateaus. Beyond the reach of glaciation to the south, the sedimentary rocks have been raised into two broad upwarps, separated from one another by the great valley of the Mississippi River. The Ozark Plateau lies west of the river and occupies most of southern Missouri and northern Arkansas; on the east the Interior Low Plateaus dominate central Kentucky and Tennessee. Except for two nearly circular patches of rich limestone country—the Nashville Basin of Tennessee and the Kentucky Bluegrass region—most of both plateau regions consists of sandstone uplands, intricately dissected by streams. Local relief runs to several hundreds of feet in most places, and visitors to the region must travel winding roads along narrow stream valleys. The soils there are poor, and mineral resources are scanty.

    Eastward from the Central Lowland the Appalachian Plateau—a narrow band of dissected uplands that strongly resembles the Ozark Plateau and Interior Low Plateaus in steep slopes, wretched soils, and endemic poverty—forms a transition between the interior plains and the Appalachian Mountains. Usually, however, the Appalachian Plateau is considered a subregion of the Appalachian Mountains, partly on grounds of location, partly because of geologic structure. Unlike the other plateaus, where rocks are warped upward, the rocks there form an elongated basin, wherein bituminous coal has been preserved from erosion. This Appalachian coal, like the Mesabi iron that it complements in U.S. industry, is extraordinary. Extensive, thick, and close to the surface, it has stoked the furnaces of northeastern steel mills for decades and helps explain the huge concentration of heavy industry along the lower Great Lakes.

    The western flanks of the Interior Lowlands are the Great Plains, a territory of awesome bulk that spans the full distance between Canada and Mexico in a swath nearly 500 miles (800 km) wide. The Great Plains were built by successive layers of poorly cemented sand, silt, and gravel—debris laid down by parallel east-flowing streams from the Rocky Mountains. Seen from the east, the surface of the Great Plains rises inexorably from about 2,000 feet (600 metres) near Omaha, Nebraska, to more than 6,000 feet (1,825 metres) at Cheyenne, Wyoming, but the climb is so gradual that popular legend holds the Great Plains to be flat. True flatness is rare, although the High Plains of western Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and eastern Colorado come close. More commonly, the land is broadly rolling, and parts of the northern plains are sharply dissected into badlands.

    The main mineral wealth of the Interior Lowlands derives from fossil fuels. Coal occurs in structural basins protected from erosion—high-quality bituminous in the Appalachian, Illinois, and western Kentucky basins; and subbituminous and lignite in the eastern and northwestern Great Plains. Petroleum and natural gas have been found in nearly every state between the Appalachians and the Rockies, but the Midcontinent Fields of western Texas and the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma, and Kansas surpass all others. Aside from small deposits of lead and zinc, metallic minerals are of little importance.

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