American Portraits

John Adams and the Defense of the Soldiers at the Boston Massacre Trial

In this lesson, students will learn about the actions of John Adams during the Boston Massacre trial. Through his example, students will learn about the virtue of justice and how they can apply this justice in their own lives.

Founding Principles

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Due Process

The government must interact with all citizens according to the duly-enacted laws; applying these rules equally among all citizens.

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Individual Responsibility

Individuals must take care of themselves and their families and be vigilant to preserve their liberty.

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Rule of Law

Government and citizens all abide by the same laws regardless of political power. Those laws respect individual rights, are transparently enacted, are justly applied, and are stable.

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