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Government and its Basic Purpose

Government, in all its forms, is instituted among people to secure their freedoms and protect their rights. This simple yet vital principle is known and accepted in all countries of the World today. This essay builds on the purpose of government through the lens of a quotation stated by an American President to suggest what important role governmental participation should play in a free society.

Fundamental Purpose of a Government

The purpose of government, in simple words, is to serve the people because governments derive their power from the individuals that make up a country. So, the sole purpose of the government should be to serve the people. Moreover, the purpose of government is to protect the rights of its citizens by providing for the safety and security of the nation and by maintaining order in the society.

Purpose of the Government through the Lens of an American President’s Quote

The quotation I have selected to explore the fundamental purpose of government through the insight of an American President, George Washington, who served the US from 1789 to 1797, reads: “The basis of our political system is the right of the people to make and to alter their constitutions of the government.” The statement is referring to the purpose of government and the principles of freedom that the founders of the United States were fighting for in the declaration of independence and the declaration of the rights of the citizens since its independence. The role of the government is, indeed, to improve the quality of life for the people but they must have the right to change the principles according to their own needs and demands. This is one of the key responsibilities of government and is a fundamental principle of the US system of government. Throughout history, the United States of America has undergone many constitutional changes to ensure it remains a strong and stable nation with a system of government which ensures that the government is working for the best interests of the citizens of the country.

The above statement made by the founding father, George Washington is the foundation of our system of representative government, which is based on the consent of the governed. The President through this quotation illustrates the American political system that is based on two ideas. First, the government has the authority to do certain things in order to benefit its people. Second, that people have the right to make changes to the rules because they are the real governing bodies of a government. So, throughout the United States, individuals have the power and ability to change the constitutions of the government if they wish to do so for the well-being of American society. Although the process of creating and amending the constitution is complicated, the basic premise that the government of the United States is based on is that the right of the people to make and alter their constitutions of government shall not be infringed upon. Washington believed strongly in this concept, and it is the foundation of the democratic form of government that the United States currently use.


In a nutshell, I believe that Washington has had strong ideas about the importance of citizens’ involvement in their government. The quotation still holds true today because modern America also wants its government to protect the rights of its people and provide a framework under which its citizens can prosper irrespective of caste, color, creed, social and economic strata, ethnicity, and religious biases. As a citizen of the United States, I always ask myself a question “Is it right for the people to create, amend, and change their governments?” I think yes because freedom of change is important to a free society. Thus, I vehemently agree with the statement George Washington quoted and believe that citizens must have the right to govern themselves as they see fit.



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