, Research Paper
How America Is Under Puritan Influence
The Puritans were a group of people who settled in New England in 1620. They went to America to be free to practice religion without being persecuted. The Puritan beliefs were similar to the Catholics. The difference was that the Puritans tried harder to enforce the Ten Commandments. Modern day America is influenced by the moral, ethical, and religious convictions of the Puritans.
The Puritans had a democratic Church order. Which meant, when people wanted to have more important roles in the church the people of the community had to vote on if that person would be able to accept the position. This showed that regular people within the community had the chance to choose their leaders. Today in America our system of government is very similar to their church order. We live in a democracy. When we are over the age of eight-teen we are allowed to vote for our mayors, senators, governors, President, etc. As citizens of the United States of America we have the right to choose who our political leaders are. This is a very noticeable trait that we share with the Puritans.
The Puritans had a very hard life. Their religion is what they focused on the most. Because of their very strict religion, the Puritans had to have much self-discipline. If someone committed a sin the church was rather harsh and severe in it s punishment plus, the community treated sinners badly. The church did not tolerate profanation on Sabbath day, blasphemy, fornication, adultery, drunkenness, playing games of chance, and participation in theatrical performances. These were considered serious offenses. Although, we aren t as strict as the Puritans, today in America some of these actions are looked down upon. For example, gambling is outlawed in many states. It is only legal in casino s which are found in very few states. Our culture stresses that sex should wait until people get married to prevent unplanned pregnancies and S.T.D. s. Also adultery is looked down upon in our society today. Although it is legal, alcohol is a serious issue. That s why under age drinking is against the law which means, anyone under 21 is prohibited to buy and/or drink alcohol. When Alcohol is abused it is looked down upon. When people drink excessive amounts of alcohol, they could be a danger to themselves and/or others.
Puritans also gave people the right to a trial. When a person was convicted of committing a sin or a crime they had a chance to tell their side of the story. There was a judge that would make the final decision. During modern day America if someone was convicted of a crime they are innocent until proven guilty. Which means that they have a right to go to court and defend their innocence.
Education was very important to the Puritans. Since religion played a major part in every Puritan s life, they had to be educated on the word of God, the laws, the lifestyle they had to live, and their sense of community. They also founded many schools and colleges. If someone wanted to get to a higher position in the church, they had to have gone through lots of training, which required a high degree of education. The Puritans also founded a public school system after they first settled in America. In our time education is very important. It is required that a person must complete twelve years of school. In order to get a respectable, well paying job, you must complete a certain amount of years of education. We still use, up until this day, the public school system in our country.
The Puritan culture has influenced modern day America. They have done this through their strict religion and their lifestyle. Many of their traits still live on in America today.