ap gov study guides

⚖️  Unit 2: Interactions Among Branches of Government

🗳  Unit 5: Political Participation

4.1 American Attitudes about Government and Politics


⏱️  2 min read

written by

isabela padilha vilela

June 7, 2020

The Principles of American Culture 

There are several aspects of American Culture that define the way that U.S citizens deal with their government. But it is important to keep in mind that different people have differing views of these elements, and this also helps them establish which ideology/party they identify the most with.

Key Terms

  • Liberty - Consists on individual liberty, freedom over virtue. 

  • Equality - Consists in both political equality, the idea that all individuals are protected under the law, and equal opportunity, as social backgrounds should not limit people from opportunities to reach their goals.  

  • Individualism - The U.S emphasis on individual liberty avoids the imposition of policies that limit individual choice. 

  • Democratic Consensus - Despite having different backgrounds, Americans mostly agree on the values of a democratic governance. 

  • Justice and Rule of Law ⚖- It is the idea that there is a body (Judiciary) that applies laws equally and fairly. No one is above the law. 

  • Limited Government - Linked with the idea of Individualism. The government should be restricted and not interfere in individual rights.  It is important to note that, although most Americans have a commitment to these set of values, they can agree to them in different ways. For example, some people may believe that the government should have at least some level of interference in people’s lives, while others believe that the government should have no say in their individual choices. Despite these disparities, they are still committed to the idea of Limited Government.

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