In class, we were asked to write a full-fledged set of rules for a “country” our class crash-landed on. Only kids survived the crash, so we had to make a civilization. It was just like the making of the constitution in some ways, different in others.
When our group sat down and decided to make rules, we did it throughout a span of several days. It took the delegates several months. The delegates of the Constitutional Convention met in May, 1787 to make the Constitution. It took them until August or so to complete the Constitution. Our group met on an ordinary school day. It took us 3 days to make our rules. Of course, the delegates had to write rules for a whole country, and four months wouldn’t be considered a huge amount of time for that. Also, there were over 50 delegates from 12 colonies in their rule-making group. Our group was 4 people. These differences are obviously because of the sheer importance differential between the two sets of rules. The delegates wrote the Constitution for the whole country of the Unites States. They were real rules and they had to be perfect in order to keep a great, prospering country. The delegates were also basically the smartest men of the country at that time. Our rules were fake and we obviously had much less time to make them. The delegates were under pressure to make the rules, while we were just doing them for a small grade and the importance of learning.
The compromising done in the Constitution was way different from ours, but also similar in a way. The compromising of the delegates was from every different point of view because all of them were from different colonies and had different backgrounds. Delegates were from farms, taverns, fishing villages, slave plantations, etc. They all had completely different views. The delegates had to issue “The Great Compromise” in order to make everyone happy about representatives per state. Our group also had to make compromises, but they were much less drastic. We are all from the same town and haven’t traveled much. Also, our group is ordinary people, while the delegates were the most elite of the smart. Of course, in our group, we had the standard goofball, critic, and conservative points of views, but they were generally the same. The most compromise we had to make was probably how to word our rules to sound better!
The Bill of Rights are similar to our rules on freedom. The Bill of Rights was originally 12 amendments, or rights, that every citizen had. The list of amendments could be added to. Nowadays, there are 27 amendments. A few of your rights are the right to possess arms, right to go to trial, and freedom of religion. Our rules on freedom were similar. One of our rules was “There must be freedom of speech and religious freedom, as long as it doesn’t disrupt society or hurt anyone”. This is very similar to the first amendment. However, we could only pick 2 rules out of many of our group’s ideas. This made our rules not complete. If we expanded our list, we probably would’ve gotten to conclusions similar to the delegates.
Our rules weren’t similar to the branches of the government. The delegates created three branches of government, each handicapped by another, to insure that no one branch gets too powerful. The branches are the Executive Branch (the president), the Legislative Branch (Congress), and the Judicial Branch (court). This was a very complex system that could only be thought of by discussing for countless hours. Our group had limited time. We made one of our rules on justice “Have a democratic system of law, with elected leaders”. We thought of the idea, but we obviously didn’t have time to actually establish and plan out the law system. This could have turned out in disaster, because if we didn’t establish a system of law quickly, other people could rebel against our law system and eventually destroy our government. At the time of the making of the Constitution, almost no one approved of it, other than the delegates. It wasn’t that it was a bad Constitution; it’s just due to the fact that it’s simply not possible to please everyone. Luckily, other people were weeks, even months worth of travel away, so nothing could have resulted in conflict.
Overall, I think if we had more time to discuss and plan our rules, they could’ve been similar to the Constitution. The delegates piggybacked some of their rules from England, so we could’ve piggybacked from the Constitution. Nevertheless, writing rules for our fake country was a great experience. It opened your mind to see different points of views. I also learned a lot about the Constitution and learning about my great country has been an awesome experience.